TOKYO — Bridgestone Corp. is claiming victory in a design patent infringement case against Chinese tire makers Shengtai Group Co. Ltd. and Shandong Shengshi Tailai Rubber Technology Co. Ltd. that pertains to its Blizzak VRX studless winter tire.
The company said it received a favorable ruling from the Intermediate People's Court in Qingdao in its lawsuit against Shengtai, regarding the infringement of its patented tread pattern for the Blizzak VRX winer passenger tire.
Bridgestone said Shengtai was ordered in July to cease activities, dispose of the dedicated molds and pay Bridgestone damages in the amount of approximately $125,000.
Tire Business is unable to confirm the ruling independently.
Bridgestone did not identify the specific tire or tires it claimed infringed on its tread patent. Shengtai goes to market with seven brands: Three-A; Yatai, Yatone, Sanijia, Shengtai, Aoteli and Omega; Shandong Shengshi Tailai Rubber also lists Three-A, Aoteli and Yatone as brands it sells, along with the Rapid brand.
Bridgestone launched the VRX in 2013 and sold it in Europe, predominantly in Russia.
In April, Bridgestone claimed victory in another lawsuit in China against Shengtai Group, claiming violations of the design patent for the tread pattern of Bridgestone's ST3000 truck tires. In 2017, it claimed a win against Guangzhou South China Tire & Rubber Co. Ltd. and Guangzhou Fengli Rubber & Tire Co. Ltd., covering its Dueler A/T Revo2 tires.