Tuesday, 21 May 2019

Royal Enfield sued by Pune company over patent

21/5/2019

PUNE: Pune-based electrical auto component maker, Flash Electronics, said that it has filed a lawsuit in the US against motorcycle maker, Royal Enfield, for patent infringement. The suit, Flash said, was filed on Thursday.

Flash said that Royal Enfield had infringed on its patent - “regulator rectifier device and method for regulating an output voltage of the same” - issued by the US Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO). It said that the allegedly-infringed-upon component is vital to charge the batteries, power the headlights, light up the instrument panels and hence drives the motorcycle’s electrical systems.

The company said that it is a supplier of this component to many leading two-wheeler manufacturers in India and overseas. Royal Enfield, however, said that the said part is procured through a “proprietary supplier,” and the said supplier “vehemently denies” the claims made by Flash Electronics.

“We would like to clarify that the said component is supplied to us by an external, proprietary supplier, which independently develops and owns the IP rights in the said component. The supplier denies plaintiff’s claims vehemently. We are actively evaluating the issue internally and seeking legal advice from our US counsels,” it said in a statement.

Flash Electronics further said that it has been granted patent for the technology in other countries also where it will be filing similar suits soon and pursue compensation claims worth millions of dollars.

Flash Electronics founder & MD Sanjeev Vasudev said that the company was approached by three senior officials of Royal Enfield on October 12, 2018 in New Delhi to settle the issue amicably and requested Flash not to file any suit on the matter. “Flash waited for the outcome of this meeting but Royal Enfield did not address the issue,” he said, adding, “it is unfortunate to have to deal with such an unexpected and unprecedented act on the part of Royal Enfield.”

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