EFI and its superwide format printer unit VUTEk recently obtained a sweeping victory in its defense of a patent lawsuit filed by Leggett & Platt, Inc.
The Federal Court of Appeals in Washington, D.C., ruled decisively and recently concluded that all the asserted claims of Leggett & Platt's (L&P) patent (U.S. Patent No. 6,755,518) were invalid on multiple grounds.
Leggett & Platt brought the lawsuit during EFI's acquisition of VUTEk in May 2005 in its home court of the Eastern District of Missouri, asserting that the L&P patent covered VUTEk's ultra-violet (UV) ink curing technology.
From the outset, EFI maintained that VUTEk was the first to invent and patent the UV technologies in question. The federal judge sided with EFI, finding that VUTEk's UV curing methods were invented and patented first (U.S. Patent Nos. 6,457,823 and 6,616,355) and as result invalidated all of Leggett & Platt's claims used in the lawsuit against EFI.
The victory clears the way for EFI to continue to deliver its innovative next generation wide format UV printers and inks, including the VUTEk QS2000, VUTEk QS3200 and VUTEk QS3200R systems, which are now shipping to customers worldwide.
The company believed from the outset that L&P's claims were without merit given VUTEk's early entry into the digital UV printing market and its remarkable success against the competitive UV technologies. The company believes this ruling concludes any issues with this patent.