Leather with Lycra

17 June 2002

The most recent round in the Guenoun/Marthens patent litigation has resulted in a victory for the companies arguing the patents are invalid. On March 29 the French Court of Appeal upheld the earlier decision that the French Guenoun patent should be revoked, and should never have been granted agreeing with the arguments presented by Cuirs de Futur (formerly SOCOP), together with Du Pont and Boot Shop. The decision to revoke the patent means that both French infringement actions brought against Cuirs de Futur and Du Pont fail. Jeff Turner, acting as spokesman for DuPont, said: 'We had always believed the Guenoun patent was invalid but it has taken a long battle through the courts to get the decision showing we were right. We will work to achieve the same result in the cases before the Italian courts and in the European Patent Office.' DuPont have now launched an action in the French courts against Guenoun and Marthens seeking compensation for the effect of seizures as well as the many examples of adverse publicity with which Guenoun attacked his competitors. Lycra® is DuPont's registered trademark for their brand of elastane with the ability to stretch up to 600% and spring back to its original shape. It blends with most fibres adding comfort, fit, freedom of movement and shape retention to garments, shoes and accessories.

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