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Improv West Associates Sues Licensee

LOS ANGELES (CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — Improv West Associates, the company behind the Improv comedy club chain has filed suit against a promoter who they accuse of setting up a competing chain.

According to Courthouse News, the Los Angeles-based Improv West says they hired Robert Hartmann to help market the Improv brand, but claims that Hartmann instead created the competing "Levity Live" comedy clubs.

Hartmann, a long-time licensee of the Improv brand, allegedly tried to secure a license for all media to promote Improv West, which was denied by the company. Then Hartmann allegedly attempted to file a patent application for the Improv trademark under Levity's name.

"Since at least 2008, Hartmann and Levity have completely leveraged their management and association with the Improv Brand to establish themselves as 'gatekeepers' to reaching stand-up comedy fans via the internet. Hartmann has falsely represented that he owns The Improv (he does not) and that he is CEO of The Improv (he is not),"

IWA is seeking punitive damages for breach of contract breach of fiduciary duty, constructive fraud and other alleged malfeasance. – CelebrityAccess Staff Writers