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Skechers Wins Out Over Adidas on Patent Dispute

Adidas was denied a motion on Monday for a preliminary injunction, which sought to make Skechers halt production and selling of the Mega-Blade series of kids’ shoes.

In a different decision also made this week, Adidas claimed Skechers intentionally and willfully infringed upon patents covering its “leaf spring” sole for its Springblade style.

The U.S. District Court of Oregon said that Adidas was unable to show that it was likely to win the case if it went to trial, referencing a similar ruling that went before the U.S. Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB). Skechers showed evidence that Adidas’ patents were invalid and convinced the PTAB to institute an inter partes review of the patents.

Adidas also said that the Mega-Blade shoes caused Adidas irreparable harm by affecting the brand’s reputation, sales, pricing and market share of the Adidas Springblade model. The court, however, disagreed, denying the preliminary injunction notion.

“The Court’s ruling inherently recognizes the weak and speculative nature of Adidas’ allegations against Skechers,” stated Michael Greenberg, Skechers president. “As owners of a vast worldwide portfolio of trademarks, patents and copyrights, Skechers respects the intellectual property rights of other companies and has invested tremendous resources into building a brand identity by developing its own distinctive designs, not by copying others. We are pleased with both of the Court’s rulings.”

The Court also dismissed Adidas’ claim for willful intentional infringement against Skechers, stating that Adidas did not show “facts from which the Court may draw the reasonable inference that [Skechers] knew of the patents-in-suit either when they issued or any time before [adidas] filed this lawsuit. Thus, [adidas’] allegations are insufficient to state a claim for willful infringement based on [Skechers’ conduct] before the lawsuit was filed.”

Adidas has yet to release a statement on the matter.