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Who owns MrBeast Burger? YouTuber sues food company for damaging his brand

2023-08-01 19:22
The YouTube sensation is seeking to terminate the partnership with the company and is calling for the immediate shutdown of the MrBeast Burger venture
Who owns MrBeast Burger? YouTuber sues food company for damaging his brand

NEW YORK CITY, NEW YORK: In an eyebrow raising turn of events, renowned YouTuber MrBeast, famed for his extravagant cash giveaways and philanthropic endeavors, has taken legal action against Virtual Dining Concepts (VDC), the company responsible for his branded line of MrBeast Burgers. The lawsuit, recently filed in the New York District Court, accuses VDC of serving subpar and "inedible" meals under his name, leading to severe damage to MrBeast's reputation. As the legal battle unfolds, the YouTube sensation seeks to terminate the partnership with VDC and calls for the immediate shutdown of the MrBeast Burger venture.

The rise and fall of MrBeast Burger

The story began in 2020 when MrBeast, whose real name is Jimmy Donaldson, joined forces with Virtual Dining Concepts to create the MrBeast Burger line. Utilizing the innovative concept of "ghost kitchens," the venture started with a bang, capturing the attention of food enthusiasts and loyal fans alike. With storefronts in existing restaurants serving up the delicious sandwiches, the initial reception was nothing short of remarkable. Thousands of fans gathered at the opening of the first MrBeast Burger location in New Jersey's American Dream mall, leading to an unprecedented sale of over a million burgers before any formal advertising efforts had even begun.

Despite the initial success, the partnership between MrBeast and Virtual Dining Concepts began to sour as the quality of the food deteriorated. The lawsuit alleges that VDC failed to maintain the standard of the MrBeast Burgers, often serving undercooked patties and cold, soggy fries. As complaints from unhappy customers mounted, the reputation of the YouTube megastar was at stake. According to the lawsuit, reports of raw and inedible burgers led to a chorus of negative reviews, tarnishing the brand and causing irreparable harm to MrBeast's image, the Daily Mail reported.

Citing customer complaints as evidence

In a bid to illustrate the extent of customer dissatisfaction, the lawsuit includes numerous direct quotes from patrons who had unfortunate experiences with MrBeast Burger. Among the snippets provided in the federal filing were scathing comments such as "disgusting," "revolting," and "inedible." One customer lamented, "It is sad that MrBeast would put his name on this." Another stated, "I have never had something so nasty." The barrage of criticism also touched on "inaccurate marketing," branding the food as "big name, poor food," and expressing disappointment "for the high price." One blunt review simply described the food as "the worst burger I have ever had."

The lawsuit asserts that the continued negligence of Virtual Dining Concepts in monitoring its ghost kitchens led to significant harm to MrBeast's brand and reputation. More than half of the over 1,000 MrBeast Burger virtual restaurants allegedly received a rating of less than two out of five stars on platforms like Yelp, significantly below the median score of four stars. Donaldson's lawyers argue that this is a clear reflection of VDC's inability to maintain adequate quality control. Furthermore, the lawsuit accuses VDC of repeatedly violating agreements by promoting MrBeast's name, image, and brand on social media and other platforms without securing written approval and consent. This breach of trust and alleged misuse of MrBeast's identity has added to the damage done to his reputation.

Fueled by the material, irreparable harm inflicted on MrBeast's reputation and brand, the lawsuit demands the right to terminate the MrBeast Burger business immediately. The court filing also seeks unspecified damages for the multiple material breaches committed by Virtual Dining Concepts. MrBeast's lawyers emphasize that the lawsuit is not just about financial gain; it's about preserving the integrity of the MrBeast brand and ensuring that customers receive the highest level of service and products.

Who owns MrBeast Burger?

Virtual Dining Concepts, the company behind MrBeast Burger, was co-founded by Robert Earl, a prominent figure in the hospitality, lodging, gaming, and food & beverage industries. He also serves as the chairman of Earl Enterprises, a company specializing in restaurant and hospitality branding, marketing, and operations. Additionally, he is the founder of Planet Hollywood International, Inc.

Earl has played a key role in expanding the trend of virtual kitchens, launching Virtual Dining Concepts in 2019. The brand encompasses a diverse array of virtual kitchen concepts, including MrBeast Burger, Guy Fieri’s Flavortown Kitchen, NASCAR Refuel, Buddy V’s Cake Slice, Barstool Bites, Mariah’s Cookies, Mario’s Tortas Lopez, Wing Squad, Pauly D’s Subs, and others, with more slated to launch in 2022. Customers can conveniently order menu items from Virtual Dining Concepts brands through individual websites, proprietary apps, and major third-party delivery services.

Beyond the virtual space, Earl's brick-and-mortar restaurant collection features acclaimed establishments such as Buca di Beppo®, Bertucci’s®,™, Brio® Italian Grille, Bravo!® Italian Kitchen, Planet Hollywood®, Earl of Sandwich®, Chicken Guy!®, Asian Street Eats™, Seaside on the Pier™, Rock & Reilly’s®, Warrior, The Breakfast Club LA, and TooJay’s®, per FoodOnDemand.