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Settlement in Trump’s Lawsuit Over Cards; He’ll Endorse Them

January 4, 1990

ATLANTA (AP) _ Billionaire developer Donald J. Trump, who sued a small maker of photo business cards last year for allegedly infringing on his name, now is endorsing ″Trump Cards″ after an out-of-court settlement.

″The cards have my personal endorsement,″ Trump said in a letter to Edward A. Zito, president of Positive Concepts Ltd. ″I believe they will become the standard by which all other business cards are measured.″

Trump viewed the business cards, which feature a photograph of the holder and have been made since 1983, quite differently last summer when his lawyers sued the suburban Atlanta company over the name.

His lawsuit contended the ″Trump Cards″ were merely an attempt to cash in on the famous Trump name, which adorns several of the billionaire’s businesses such as the Trump Shuttle air service and Trump casinos in Atlantic City, N.J.

Zito said the name was inspired by the term for the high-ranking suit in a card game.

Under the settlement announced Wednesday, Trump was given the rights to the ″Trump Cards″ trademark and will license PCL to market the product. Trump will receive a monthly royalty.

Neither Zito nor Joe Silver, a spokesman for the Trump Organization in New York, would say how much the royalty will be. Zito said, however, the figure was relatively nominal.

″Let’s face facts - he’s a billionaire, and we’re just coming along as a company,″ Zito said. ″What’s it to him if he got five, 10, $15,000 a year?″

Zito said advertisements featuring Trump’s endorsement will begin appearing in business magazines this spring.

Silver said Trump’s lawyers usually pounce on any attempt to use the Trump name, and ″we haven’t lost a case.″ Trump said in his letter to Zito that he decided to join forces with PCL instead of fighting it because he examined the photo business cards and liked them.

Silver said Trump has some of the cards with his photo on them but wasn’t sure if he was using them regularly.

″I can’t tell you if he hands them out to everyone,″ Silver said. ″He’s never had a business card before, so I imagine that’s his business card.″

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