Hasbro Withdraws Patent Infringement Charge Against Lanard Toys

Lanard aggressively contested Hasbro's allegations of infringement, but agreed to stop selling the products; in exchange, Hasbro dismissed claims of infringement.

HONG KONG -- Lanard Toys has settled a patent dispute brought by their competitor, Hasbro, Inc., relating to toy disc shooters.  Hasbro accused Lanard's Total XStream Air Fire Shot, Total XStream Air Ring Accelerator, and Air Zone Ring Accelerator products of infringing two patents licensed to Hasbro.  Although Lanard aggressively contested Hasbro's allegations of infringement, Lanard agreed to stop selling these products in the interests of resolving the lawsuit.  In exchange, Hasbro agreed to dismiss its claims of infringement against Lanard.

Hasbro waited almost seven years to file the lawsuit even though Lanard’s Fire Shot and Ring Accelerator had been on the market since 2003.  Lanard took the view that Hasbro's claims were blocked by the legal theory of laches.  This theory could void the rights of patent holders who sleep on those rights for over six years.

Lanard also had concerns with regards the validity of the patents asserted by Hasbro.  Consequently, Lanard has sought re-examination of the asserted patents at the U. S. Patent and Trademark Office ("USPTO"), arguing that prior art existed invalidating the patents asserted by Hasbro. Another toy producer, namely Ganz of Canada, has also challenged the same patents.  At this stage, the USPTO has agreed with the arguments made by both Lanard and Ganz, finding that the prior art cited by Lanard Toys and by Ganz rendered all of the patent claims invalid.