“Fong On” Name Disappears From Mott Street Awning, Dispute Isn’t Over Yet
Here’s a followup from a story we reported last week. The Eng family, which has owned the “Fong On” brand for decades, has been pursuing a trademark infringement case against a Chinatown businessman.
After more than 80 years, their tofu shop known as Fong Inn Too, closed at 46 Mott St. last year. But a few months ago, a new store opened using the Fong On name. The family sent a cease and desist letter to the new operator, John Yee, and the property owner.
This morning, Chinatown activist Karlin Chan sent us the photo you see posted above. The English version of the Fong On name has been removed from the awning. So, perhaps, a deal is in the works to end this dispute before Lunar New Year celebrations get underway later this week.
However, the two sides have reached no agreements, according to Paul Eng. Today he tells us the family wants to make sure the Chinese characters on the building facade (above the awning) are also removed and returned to the family. The Engs say the new property owner agreed to hand over the characters before he purchased the building from them last year. Paul Eng said attorneys on both sides had a preliminary conversation yesterday, but the issue will not be resolved until there’s a signed agreement.