One of the competing bids for the NRL’s 17th licence, the Redcliffe Dolphins, officially filed a name trademark.

One of the competing bids for the NRL’s 17th licence, the Redcliffe Dolphins, officially filed a trademark on the title “Brisbane Dolphins” on February 4, Wide World of Sports can reveal.

Dropping their suburban name of Redcliffe by switching to the title “Brisbane Dolphins” will no doubt broaden their appeal beyond the Moreton Bay Region housing around 470,000 residents.

But according to club chairman Bob Jones, the trademark application does not guarantee that will be the team’s name when submitting their bid to the NRL.

“We only registered it to keep it up our sleeve,” Jones said.

“We will actually go to the community and get the fans input. It’s not concrete and one of a number of a few tossed around, but more than likely the name Redcliffe will be dropped.”

So, what are the options being touted within the bidding team?

“It must be representative of the region,” Jones said.

“A couple of the names we are looking at are the Sunshine State Dolphins and the River City Dolphins. The application for the title Brisbane Dolphins was to guarantee it was available if we chose it.”

The name ‘Dolphins’ has a long history in Rugby League. Back in January of 1996, Super League attempted to trademark the name ‘Cronulla Dolphins before withdrawing the application one year later.

The Gold Coast Titans also attempted to use the Dolphins name before eventually switching to the Titans, after a legal challenge from NFL properties protecting their Miami Dolphins brand in April of 2005.

Surprisingly, the NRL is yet to officially issue competing bids with the specific criteria which will be used to determine who is granted the 17th licence.

If it is centred on revenue, then the Dolphins bid will be the clear favourites, as their annual turnover of around $50 million dwarfs the competing franchises.

Disclaimer: Ramy Haidar, formerly known as The NRL Economist, is currently employed by NRL club the Manly Sea Eagles.

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