Oddur Eysteinn Friðriksson, the mind behind Mom Air, sent a statement to the Grapevine this morning wherein he states “Mom Air is not performance art of any sort”. He also stated that there are “obvious differences” between Mom Air’s logo and colour scheme and defunct airline WOW Air’s, despite what a lawyer representing the owner of WOW Air intellectual property has to say.
As reported, the Grapevine received a press release about Mom Air, announcing it as a new budget airline that places gender equality at the forefront of its mission. The Grapevine were not the only ones who noticed the striking similarities between Mom Air and WOW Air in terms of logo, colour scheme, destinations and overall theme. After seeing that the website’s domain was registered to a well-known artist, and that the airline’s web presence appeared just a few weeks ago, we reported that Mom Air was probably performance art.
Páll Ágúst Ólafsson, a lawyer protecting the interests of Michelle Ballarin and the company US Aerospace Associates LLC—which owns WOW Air intellectual property—subsequently told reporters that “This is clearly an unauthorised use of a trademarked logo.”
In a statement sent to the Grapevine, Oddur says in part, “In light of the reporting about the new airline over the past few days, I want to make it clear that Mom Air is not a performance of any sort. We are talking about a new airline on the market that will change the history of Icelandic aviation.”
Oddur says that over the course of his career as an artist, he has made contacts with numerous investors, companies, institutions and regular citizens, and sought to take part in a “revolution” that would require “creative thinking”. The recent appearance of Mom Air, he said, can be attributed in part to many people who are involved having signed non-disclosure agreements.
Mom Air, Oddur says, marks a turning point in Icelandic flights in that it grants people the ability to book flights without paying ahead of time, and cancel them without being penalised. Furthermore, the airline will also offer standby seating, where people can put themselves on a waiting ling and buy seats that were cancelled with short notice. Mom Air also plans to offer two free seats on every plane, wherein passengers would only pay for the return ticket.
“This point of view seems to have caused a reaction with Ballarin and associates, as I received a phone call from Páll Ágúst Ólafsson, wherein he threatened to sue me if I didn’t cease operations of the founding of Mom Air,” Oddur says. “At the same time, Páll told Fréttablaðið that ‘This is clearly an unauthorised use of a trademarked logo’. There is an obvious difference in the design of the logo, colour scheme, policy and moreover theme of the trademark. Our purple is a blend of purple and red, which is symbolic of what happened to the market after the fall of WOW Air.”
Oddur says that bookings are open today, and those interested should see what Mom Air has to offer.
“I want to encourage the forces of society that are interested in making this airline a reality to take part in the revolution from the beginning!,” Oddur says in closing.
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