*NEWS*EPSON:ACTION AGAINST REMANUFACTURES
*NEWS*EPSON:ACTION AGAINST REMANUFACTURES
2006-02-27 at 10:49:00 am #14640
Epson Sues Several Ink Cartridge Resellers
Printer maker accuses companies that make or sell third-party ink of infringing upon its patents.
Seiko Epson has filed more lawsuits against companies making or selling third-party ink cartridges that it believes infringe upon its intellectual patents.
The company filed a complaint last week with the U.S. International Trade Commission against 24 companies that manufacture, import, or distribute aftermarket ink cartridges for sale in the U.S., the Japanese company said this week. The complaint seeks to ban the companies from importing or selling the cartridges in question in the U.S.
In conjunction with this case the company also filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court in Portland against the same companies seeking damages for the alleged intellectual property infringement.
Epson has also kicked off a patent infringement case against the English High Court against Medea International, it said. As in the U.S. cases Epson is alleging that ink cartridges imported by Medea International, which are sold in the U.K. under the Inkrite Photo Plus brand, infringe upon its patents.
The case against the U.K. company was brought after it began promoting a spongeless valve design in its cartridges as being “radically different and unique.” In fact, the design is similar to a patented Epson technology and the lawsuit was brought “to set the record straight,” Epson said in a statement.
Epson fought similar battles in 2005.
In April it filed lawsuits in the same Portland court against Armor, of Nantes, France, and Multi-Union Trading, of Hong Kong. The latter ended with a settlement that saw 75 of Multi-Union’s cartridge models barred from being imported and sold in the U.S.
In June the U.K.’s Environmental Business Products said it had stopped importing and supplying Epson-compatible printer cartridges as a result of an out of court settlement between it and the Japanese company and in October another British company, CybaHouse, agreed to stop selling and importing Epson-compatible cartridges as part of a settlement with Epson.
Epson Takes Action Against 24 Aftermarket Ink Cartridge Companies to Protect Intellectual Property
Company Lodges Complaint With International Trade Commission and Files Patent
Infringement Lawsuit in U.S. District Court
LONG BEACH, Calif., Feb.06 — Epson lodged a complaint onFeb. 17 with the United States International Trade Commission (ITC) against 24
companies that manufacture, import, or distribute aftermarket ink cartridges
for resale in the United States. The complaint, filed by Epson Portland Inc.,
Epson America Inc., and Seiko Epson Corp. alleges that these companies’
cartridges infringe at least nine patents that cover numerous models of
cartridges for Epson’s desktop inkjet printers. Epson is asking the ITC to
issue a general exclusion order prohibiting these companies and others from
importing and selling infringing cartridges into the United States.
In conjunction with the ITC complaint, Epson has also filed a lawsuit in
the U.S. District Court in Portland, Ore. against these same 24 companies
asserting similar patent infringement claims. The District Court complaint
seeks a permanent injunction against infringement and monetary damages.
Epson has made continuous worldwide investments in R&D and significant
investments in manufacturing in the United States to produce high quality,
innovative cartridges. Both actions are part of Epson’s worldwide efforts to
protect the company and its customers from unfair competition of all types,
including the sale of patent-infringing ink cartridges.
“Epson recognizes and respects competitors’ rights to sell aftermarket ink
cartridges as long as they compete fairly, which includes not infringing
patents,” said Liz Leung, director of Supplies Marketing, Epson America. “As
with numerous patent and trademark infringement lawsuits filed previously, we
have taken both of these actions to protect the company’s innovative products
from unfair competition.”