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Tilia Wins Patent Infringement Case Against Applica
Dec 8, 2004
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Tilia Inc., maker of the FoodSaver(R) vacuum packaging system, announced that it won a patent infringement ruling against Applica, a Black & Decker licensee, regarding two new vacuum sealing machines Applica had been planning to market.

Chicago, IL, U.S.-based arbitrator James Amend of Kirkland & Ellis LLP found that two new vacuum packaging machines designed and manufactured by Applica were based on technology protected by a patent held by Tilia. Specifically, he ruled that both of Applica's new Black & Decker machines would infringe on eight separate patent claims made by Tilia.

"Our products set the standard in the vacuum packaging industry because of the heavy investments Tilia has and will continue to make in technology," Linda Graebner, Tilia's president and CEO, said. "Our company will steadfastly defend its technology from those who might wish to use portions of it in their own products."

This is the second patent case Tilia has filed against Applica. Last year, Tilia accused Applica's first vacuum sealing machine, the freshGUARD, of infringing Tilia's patented technology. Shortly before the trial, in April 2004, Applica agreed to settle that first claim, Tilia said. As part of the settlement, Tilia said Applica agreed to settle any future product infringement disputes through binding arbitration, which avoids the higher costs of a court action and can result in a speedier resolution.

"The bottom line is that FoodSaver is the No. 1 brand in vacuum packaging because our appliances are built on superior technology," Ms. Graebner said. “We then invest in quality controls that ensure our consumers can depend on FoodSaver's reliability. We're going to protect that investment."

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