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Robert Bosch LLC v. Pylon Manufacturing Corp.

United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
659 F.3d 1142 (2011)


Facts

Robert Bosch LLC (Bosch) (plaintiff) owned patents covering beam-type windshield-wiper blades. Bosch sold the blades to mass-merchandisers, automotive specialty retailers, and original-equipment manufacturers. Pylon Manufacturing Corporation, LLC (Pylon) (defendant) competed with Bosch in the sale of beam blades. In 2006, Wal-Mart agreed to distribute Bosch’s blades. When Bosch failed to deliver the blades on time, Wal-Mart distributed Pylon’s blades instead. Bosch sued Pylon for infringement, along with other competitors in separate suits. A jury determined that Pylon had infringed the patents, and Bosch requested a permanent injunction against future infringement. At trial, Bosch contended that it would suffer irreparable harm in the absence of an injunction. Bosch further contended that it experienced harm in the form of lost market share, because Pylon was absorbed the Wal-Mart account that Bosch had initially secured. If Pylon were enjoined, then Bosch would be able to regain the Wal-Mart account. Bosch presented expert testimony establishing that the loss of the Wal-Mart account had also lost Bosch other potential customers. Lastly, Bosch presented significant evidence bringing into question Pylon’s ability to satisfy a monetary judgment, including a risk-management report indicating Pylon’s increased risk of bankruptcy. The district court denied the requested injunction, concluding that Bosch failed to show irreparable harm. Bosch appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (O’Malley, J.)

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