Polartec LLC, based in Lawrence, Mass., has filed a patent infringement complaint with the German District Court in Düsseldorf against Pontetorto SpA, a fabric manufacturer in Prato, Italy, and its German sales agent, Christian Weichert Internationale Textilvertretungen GmbH.
The complaint alleges that the defendants have infringed and continue to infringe on a European patent licensed exclusively to Polartec that is directed to grid-back, knit construction textiles by the sale of Pontetorto’s Technostretch products. In addition to monetary damages for patent infringement, Polartec’s lawsuit seeks an injunction preventing the sale of infringing products.
“Innovation is the essence of the Polartec brand,” said Gary Smith, Polartec chief executive officer. “Developing differentiated textile solutions and driving the entire industry forward requires a level of infrastructure and investment far in excess of the commitment from so-called fast followers. Anytime someone takes our proprietary designs and asks another mill to ‘make it cheaper,’ they are damaging our ability to innovate in the future and undermining the desire of innovators and designers everywhere to invest in bringing great ideas to market.”
Polartec, formerly known as Malden Mills, invented modern synthetic fleece and holds more than 135 patents worldwide.