Monday, December 24, 2012

Pepsi-Cola Sued for Patent Infringement

Plaintiff: Marshall Feature Recognition

Defendants: Pepsi-Cola and Frito-Lay

Case Number: 6:12-cv-00956
Date Filed: December 20, 2012

Patent-in-Suit: US6886750

The ‘750 patent is currently assigned[i] to Marshall Feature Recognition (source: Maxval’s Assignment Database). The patent entitled System and method for incentive programs and award fulfillment was issued on May 03, 2005 and expires[ii] by May 25, 2014. The patent describes methods and apparatus relating generally to the electronics media industry, such as cable television (CATV), home shopping services, on-line computer services and computer memory applications. These methods and apparatus allow a user to access and make use of electronic media input and output devices by reference to and/or utilization of standard printed matter, such as magazines, textbooks, or any other printed matter that can be correlated to electronic media.

About the Parties:
Pepsi was renamed as Pepsi-Cola on August 28, 1898, then to Pepsi in 1961. Pepsi-Cola North America is the refreshment beverage unit of PepsiCo, Inc., in the United States and Canada. Its U.S. brands include Pepsi, Mountain Dew, Sierra Mist, SoBe, AMP Energy, IZZE, Mug, and Aquafina, among others. The company also makes and markets in North America ready-to-drink iced teas and coffees, respectively, via joint ventures with Lipton and Starbucks.

Frito-Lay North America is the division of PepsiCo that manufactures, markets and sells corn chips, potato chips and other snack foods.

As in Complaint:
Plaintiff alleges that defendants infringe the above patent by making use of Quick Response (QR) codes printed on their commercial advertisements by a method claimed in the ‘750 patent. QR codes are features recognized by a mobile smartphone device that uses a barcode scanner application to communicate with the QR code to obtain programmed information relating to the advertisement.

Other Case(s) Filed:
Plaintiff partnered with Scanbury and filed a suit (1:09-cv-04297) against Neomedia Technologies involving US7287696 and the ‘750 patent, which is still pending.

If you are interested in knowing more details about the case filed, please contact us. To get alerts on cases filed, subscribe to our Litigation Alerts.

[i] MaxVal offers Patent Assignment Alert service where subscribers receive email alerts when assignments relating to target applications, patents or entities of interest are recorded.
[ii] Expected expiration date. Patent Term Estimator is a free web-based tool that automatically calculates patent terms and expiration dates for U.S. utility patents.

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