Product Seizure at BAUMA
Our client was an international producer of products for the construction industry, such as concrete formworks. HOFFMANN EITLE had been successful in acquiring a broad patent regarding formwork supports for this client. The “BAUMA” trade fair takes place in Munich every three years and is the most important trade fair worldwide for the construction-machinery industry. Before the fair took place a few years ago, it became apparent that two competitors of our client were going to exhibit products infringing its wide-ranging formwork-support patent.
One of our patent attorneys immediately went over to the BAUMA trade fair and inspected the exhibition stands of the two competitors, collecting information material and taking pictures of the infringing products. Together with one of our attorneys-at-law, requests for provisional injunctions were prepared and filed with the court. They were already granted on the second day of the trade fair, and were served and executed by a bailiff on the following day. We had planned in advance for someone from the storage company working at the trade fair to also be present and he immediately removed the infringing products. This left one of the competitor stands looking decidedly “bare”.
With the injunctions, the patent-infringing products could be quickly removed from the week-long trade fair. The respective companies thereafter signed cease-and-desist declarations and this permanently stopped the patent infringements. The entire construction-machinery sector followed with great interest the seizure of the infringing products and, before the next BAUMA that took place three years later, numerous competitors announced that they had carefully examined the patent situation. From then on, no infringing formwork supports were exhibited by competitors again – our client’s competitors had learnt to respect their IP.