Last week, Columbia Sportswear Company was awarded more than $3 million in a patent infringement lawsuit against a San Diego company called Seiru Innovation Accessories. The three patents in question at the Federal District Court in San Diego were related to Columbia’s Omni-Heat Reflective Technology in Seirus’ HeatWave products, which include a variety of different types of gloves.
The technology for the Omni-heat was patented in April 2012 bu Columbia sportswear. Since then, they have fought a string of lawsuits to prevent competitors from using the technology, including one in 2013 and one in 2016. The $3 million award was based upon the profits Seirus earned from the infringing products. Further to this, Columbia may also seek prejudgment interest and the profits retailers earned from selling the infringing products. The jury also found that two claims of one of Columbia’s U.S. Omni-Heat utility patents are invalid. “We continue to maintain numerous patents around the globe related to our Omni-Heat designs and technology, and will seek to overturn the jury’s partial invalidation of one of our U.S. Omni-Heat patents,” said Bragdon.
In an official statement, Columbia had this to say about the decision:
“We are very pleased that Seirus has been held accountable for infringing our design patent,” said Peter Bragdon, Columbia’s Executive Vice President and General Counsel. “Seirus continued to promote and sell its infringing HeatWave products even after Judge Hernandez ruled in August 2016 that the products infringed Columbia’s U.S. design patent, unfairly profiting from Columbia’s innovations. We believe all our innovative products provide superior performance and we will continue to aggressively pursue infringing products.”
However, the win is only a partial one for Columbia.
This latest suit, too, is only a partial win. The court decided Seirus infringed one of three patents Columbia claimed in its lawsuit filing. In a statement, the company said it plans to appeal that ruling.
“We believe all our innovative products provide superior performance and we will continue to aggressively pursue infringing products,” Bragdon said in the statement. “We continue to maintain numerous patents around the globe related to our Omni-Heat designs and technology, and will seek to overturn the jury’s partial invalidation of one of our U.S. Omni-Heat patents.”