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Starbucks Sued for Alleged Patent Infringement

Written by Jane Coyle on 04 December 2007

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Starbucks has been sued for allegedly infringing another company's patented design for a nonelectric coffee maker.

Bodum USA, based in New York, accused Seattle-based Starbucks of copying its silver-domed glass carafe design and selling the copy as its own "Anniversary Press" coffee maker. Both products are available in the U.S., according to the complaint filed last week in federal court in Chicago. The suit seeks more than $10 million in damages.

"Starbucks has sold Bodum's coffee makers for at least 20 years in its stores and, therefore, is well aware of Bodum's trade dress and celebrity," attorney David Bennett wrote in the complaint, referring to the look and reputation of the company's products.

Starbucks spokesman Brandon Borrman said the company wasn't aware of the complaint and couldn't immediately comment.

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