AD Coffeemaker Program

 

We represented a Hong Kong manufacturer in two design patent actions.

In the first action, we prevailed at trial against Sunbeam, obtaining a judgment of $2.3 million for our client by enforcing its coffeemaker design patent.  

In the second action, we enforced our client's coffeemaker design patent against Simatelex Manufacturing Co., resulting in a $1.8 million settlement for our client.

Details

 

In 1994, a principal of our Hong Kong client conceived of a unique ornamental design for a coffeemaker, and obtained a patent for it. The client then worked with the Ohio-based Mr. Coffee® company incorporating the design into a product. 

Initially, our client manufactured the enormously successful coffeemaker for Mr. Coffee®.  But eventually, Mr. Coffee® and its successor, Sunbeam, began buying a copy of the coffeemaker from a competitor, Simatelex Manufacturing Co., despite our client’s design patent.  

In 2001, we sued Sunbeam for patent infringement. Sunbeam hired Weil, Gotshal & Manges. We prevailed at trial, obtaining a judgment of $2.3 million for our client.  Sunbeam then hired Fish & Neave, now Ropes & Grey, to appeal.  The Federal Circuit affirmed.  The Supreme Court denied Sunbeam’s petition for a writ of certiorari.

We subsequently commenced another patent infringement action against Simatelex. After the Court granted summary judgment on liability in favor of our client, the action settled for $1.8 million.