102 North College, Suite 900, Tyler Texas 75702
Phone: 903-597-8311

Major Patent Win

A team of attorneys from Potter Minton and Holland & Knight recently won a jury verdict for their client in a major patent infringement case. The client, Picanol N.V. of Belgium, was accused of infringing two patents concerning automation of the airjet weaving process. The owner of the patents, Sulzer A.G. of Switzerland, filed the suit in Tyler’s Federal District Court contending that Picanol’s Omni, Delta and Omni Plus lines of weaving machines contained computer source code which caused the machines to duplicate Sulzer’s patented methods.

During trial, Sulzer sought $27 million in royalties and lost profits and claimed that Picanol had willfully infringed the patents. Willful infringement, if found, would have resulted in a tripling of any damages awarded. In defense, Picanol denied infringement and contended that Sulzer’s patents were invalid. Although the trial lasted two and half weeks, the jury of 5 men and 2 women returned a verdict in favor of Picanol after just over two hours of deliberation.

Commenting on the victory, John Minton said, “I am obviously happy with the jury’s decision. With such a complex subject matter, it was important that we present our client’s defense in a clear and understandable manner. I am pleased that we were able to accomplish that goal.”