Dragons Den participant infringes patent

23 March 2010

It has come to light that the Rapstrap product featured in the March issue of Electrical Times infringes upon another company’s patent.

At the request of Millepede Ltd, the UK Intellectual Property Office undertook a detailed tech-nical review of the Rapstrap product made by Andrew Harsley, an ex-employee of Millepede, and concluded that it infringes Millepede’s granted patent.

Both parties were asked to supply additional information to a senior examiner at the UK patent office to allow his review, and the examiner concluded the Rapstrap product possessed all the characteristics needed to infringe the Millepede patent.

Harsley failed to mention Millepede’s existence, or the fact that he had previously worked for the company, on the programme.

The Rapstrap has received major publicity in the UK as the most successful Dragons Den product in the history of the program by securing a £36m order from a major distributor.

John Butterworth Millepede’s Managing Director said: “I was amazed when Harsley, who had previously founded the Millepede company forgot to mention Millepede’s  existence on the program. Then afterwards all the parties showed a lack of interest in talking to Millepede about our prior patent. I hope this official review will now change that situation.”

Extract from Electrical Times 17 Mar 09
Website: http://www.electricaltimes.co.uk
Link: http://www.electricaltimes.co.uk/news/article.asp?articleid=5177

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