Flash Electronics Files Lawsuit Against Royal Enfield For Patent Infringement

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Royal Enfield is evaluating the issue internally and seeking legal advice from the US counsels.

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Home-grown electronic and electric auto components player Flash Electronics India Ltd against Royal Enfield challenging patent infringement in the US regarding the production of an important component for motorcycles, the company said in a press release.

As per the suit filed, Royal Enfield has infringed Flash electronics’ patent on “Regulator Rectifier Device and Method for Regulating an Output Voltage of the Same” duly issued by the United States Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO) to Flash Electronics on February 20, 2018 after Flash’s R&D department made a breakthrough invention of the component in 2014. 

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Besides the USA, Flash has been granted the patent in various other countries including many European countries including Germany, France, Italy, United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Sweden, Spain, Austria, Switzerland as well as Turkey and the company would be filing similar suits in the respective jurisdictions soon.

The Flash group supplies components to various two-wheeler companies including Bajaj Auto, India Yamaha Motor, and JAWA Motorcycles, and globally it caters to companies like Porsche, Audi, BMW, KTM, Kawasaki, Harley-Davidson, Ducati and Triumph.

Regulator rectifier – The vital component

The statement said that Flash’s R&D department made a breakthrough invention of the component in 2014. Since then, Flash Electronics has been the key manufacturer and supplier of this component to many leading two-wheeler manufacturers in India and overseas.

The regulator-rectifier is a vital component that smoothly and efficiently converts the AC (alternating current) voltage produced in motorcycle engines into DC (Direct Current) voltage to charge the batteries, power the headlights, light up the instrument panel hence drives the motorcycle’s electrical systems.

Commenting on the incident, Sanjeev Vasdev, Founder and MD, Flash Electronics India Pvt Ltd said that they have been trusted suppliers to leading auto manufacturers across India and overseas and it’s unfortunate to have to deal with such an unexpected and unprecedented act on the part of Royal Enfield, which is one of the most prestigious names in the automotive sector.

Vasdev further commented that Flash will take all necessary action required across the world to ensure that Royal Enfield stops infringing the patent and pays compensation for the violation which would run into millions of dollars. He also urged other component manufacturers to be vigilant, on this kind of predatory behaviour.

Claim denied

In a statement rebuking the allegations, Royal Enfield said that they are a responsible company that has been working with various suppliers for over 60 years, in a manner that meets all legal and regulatory requirements.

Speaking on the lawsuit filed, Royal Enfield said to the news daily that the said component is supplied to them by an external, proprietary supplier, which independently develops and owns the IP rights in the said component. 

The company is evaluating the issue internally and seeking legal advice from our US counsels.

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