The world's longest water-fight has ended in favour of toy and consumer products company, Zuru, with a jury verdict finding Telebrands and its subsidiary, Bulbhead.com, wilfully infringed the IP of the award-winning Bunch O Balloons range, US patents 9315282 and 9242749.
Plaintiffs, Zuru and Tinnus Enterprises sued for patent infringement in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Texas and a jury has awarded lost profits and reasonable royalty damages in the amount of US$12,250,000.
The verdict supports the three previous preliminary injunctions against Telebrands to bar US sales of the Battle Balloons, including Balloon Bonanza HD and Battle Balloon Color Burst products. Zuru is pursuing two additional cases against Telebrands, one involving the Balloon Bonanza, and the Easy Einsteins products.
The original Bunch O Balloons product won the 2017 US Outdoor TOTY, the 2016 Australian Toy of The Year and the 2016 Nuremburg Toy Award and shipped more than three billion balloons worldwide during the past year.
“The jury served justice today. Telebrands is infringing on our intellectual property and has received a strong message that this conduct will not be tolerated,” Anna Mowbray, Zuru chief operating officer said.
“Zuru works diligently to bring innovation to market and to stand by its inventors. We are committed to continuously fighting what we believe are knock-off companies like Telebrands who try to undercut inventors and claim innovations as their own,” she said.
“We are confident that the U.S. legal system will help us continue to send this message. Moreover, we are looking forward to an award of enhanced damages above and beyond the $12,250,000 based on findings of Telebrands’ wilful misconduct.”
“The jury served justice today,” Greg Smith, General Counsel, Zuru said. “Telebrands is infringing on our intellectual property and has received a strong message that this conduct will not be tolerated.”