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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)

Motorcycles are inherently dangerous and riders are only allowed so much protection from the gear that we choose to place on our bodies. Dainese has always been an innovator when it comes to motorcycle safety. They were the first to incorporate back protectors into the leather pajamas that early motorcycle racers wore in the late 70's, and more recently they were the first to dream up the incorporation of airbags into jackets and race suits in 1995 and then implement them for testing in 2000.

As is the way when you have a good idea, others latch on like a bunch of lampreys and suck the life right out of it. There is a bit of a legal battle over the patents of the use of airbags in motorcycle gear. Alpinestars and Dainese are currently engaged in a he-said-she-said over the patents. Dainese holds several patents and had issued a cease and desist to certain German retailers of Alpinestars Tech-Air systems. AStars tried to get ahead of the news publicly by issuing a statement to the press essentially stating that the cease and disist had been issued, but not a legal action. Thus leaving readers to infer that they had done nothing legally wrong.

Dainese, this morning, offered a formal response to this statement setting the record straight. There were two injunctions levied against AStars in the German court stating that the Tech-Air systems infringe upon two of the Dainese European patents. There is an additional lawsuit seeking damages and the halt of commercialization of the Tech-Air system in Germany.

There are very similar injunctions and law suits in Italy as well. Dainese has left these statements to stand on their own in an effort to halt the childish finger pointing. They instead cited that they would discuss the situation in "appropriate venues," of which I assume the public press is not one.

In doing some research, the earliest time stamp that I could find on the Alpinestars Tech-Air system was this page on the Alpinestars website (that didn't work terribly well) detailing a Jorge Lorenzo crash at Laguna Seca in 2011. The notes on the page discussed the use of data logging suits being used in 2003 and how those were implemented into the development of the air system, but no other dates. In 2011, the suits were used in the Moto GP season and went on sale in the month of July of that same year in Europe. This is several months after the D-Air system became available from Dainese (see timeline below).

To me, Dainese has a lot of legal ground to stand on and seeing that they are handling this in the courtroom and not on a public stage, I think they are making the right moves. What do you think?
 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)

STATEMENT REGARDING DAINESE LAWSUITS AGAINST ALPINESTARS

VICENZA, Ialy (Dec. 29, 2015) – With respect to Alpinestars’ “Statement regarding press coverage of Patent Challenge,” and for the sake of clarity, Dainese deems it necessary to reply to the following claim:

“In Germany, Dainese did make a direct request to certain retailers, that they cease and desist from offering for sale the Alpinestars Tech-Air Street system, however, no legal action has been taken against Alpinestars.”

In fact:

In October 2015, the Court of Munich released two autonomous preliminary injunctions against a German Alpinestars dealer, confirming that the Alpinestars Tech-Air system infringes two Dainese patents in Europe.
Dainese has also recently filed, before a German Court, an additional lawsuit against Alpinestars, seeking compensatory damages for infringement of Dainese’s patents and the halting of commercialization of the Tech-Air system in Germany.


In addition, Dainese would like to clarify that:

Dainese has never received a cease-and-desist letter from Alpinestars.
Dainese has filed a lawsuit against Alpinestars before an Italian court, seeking compensatory damages for infringement of Dainese’s patents, as well as an urgent preliminary injunction for halting the commercialization of the Tech-Air system in Italy.
Dainese’s patents have been released by the European Patent Office following a long verification procedure, and are therefore registered and fully valid.


At this time, Dainese will not comment further on the merit of those lawsuits, instead preferring to discuss them in the appropriate venues.

Advocating and delivering safety to people exposed to traumatic injuries in dynamic sports has been the mission of Dainese since Lino Dainese founded the company in 1972. From the very first day, Dainese has been the innovator for protection in active sports, with major industry firsts including the back protector for motorcycle riding, skiing, mountain biking and equestrian use, as well as the D-air® airbag system, which Mr. Dainese conceived in 1995.

Dainese owns 26 patents on the D-air technology and has made extensive investments in the research, invention, development, manufacture and marketing of the first and most innovative airbag-protection platform for motorcyclists: the D-air systems for racetrack and road use.
In 2015, D-air for racetrack use became an open platform, as D-air Armor was integrated into the products of other motorcycle-garment manufacturers, enabling more riders to take advantage of the safety provided by the Dainese D-air system.
The D-air platform has also been used to develop D-air Ski, an innovative airbag system for use in skiing, as well as airbag systems for use in the automotive field.

About the Dainese Group
Founded in 1972 by Lino Dainese, Dainese produces protective wear for motorcycling, mountain biking, winter sports and equestrian use. In 2007 the company acquired premium race- and sport-helmet manufacturer AGV, and in 2015 it acquired premium winter sports and cycling protective-gear brand POC. Dainese, AGV and POC protective products showcase some of the most innovative technologies in action sports and are used by the world’s top athletes. Headquartered in Vicenza, Italy, Dainese is distributed in North America exclusively by Dainese USA, which, along with Parts Unlimited, also distributes AGV helmets.
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)

DAINESE D-AIR MILESTONES

  • 1995: Lino Dainese has the idea to protect motorcycle riders with air, marking the birth of the D-air® concept.
  • 2000: The first D-air prototype for road use is presented in Munich.*
  • 2006: The D-air system for racetrack use—the first self-contained motorcycle airbag system that independently functions without any physical connection to the motorcycle—deploys during an organized test in Adria, Italy.
  • 2007: The first D-air deployment during an official Grand Prix of the MotoGP® World Championship occurs in a fall by Dainese D-air rider Simone Grotzky at the Valencia Grand Prix.*
  • 2008: The first crash tests of a prototype D-air system for road use are carried out.
  • March 2009: Ducati and Dainese begin a partnership for the full integration of D-air into a production motorcycle.
  • 2009: During the German Grand Prix, for the first time, at least one rider in every category wears a suit fitted with D-air for racetrack use.*
  • 2010: Having passed more than 800 individual tests, D-air for racetrack use is awarded certification by Tüv Süd, one of the most respected European Certification centers.*
  • January 2011: Dainese and the International Ski Federation (FIS®) sign a cooperation agreement to develop D-air Ski, a protective system based on the D-air platform, to prevent injuries to skiers competing in the Alpine Skiing World Cup speed disciplines (Downhill and Super-G).
  • March 2011: D-air for racetrack use becomes available to the public and is distributed to the market.*
  • November 2011: D-air for road use is presented at the EICMA show in Milan.
  • 2012: ADAC, the respected German Automobile Club, officially recognizes the exceptional performance of D-air for road use.
  • 2012: Having passed more than 800 individual tests, D-air for road use is awarded certification by Tüv Süd, which followed automotive safety standards while carrying out hundreds of tests on D-air’s harmlessness, protective features, electronics safety and ergonomics. D-air for road use and racetrack use are the only motorcycle airbag systems to be certified by Tüv Süd.*
  • April 2012: D-air for road use becomes available to the public and is distributed to the market.*
  • May 2012: Dainese supplies and protects the Italian Motorway Patrol Service with D-air for road use.
  • September 2012: At the IAA Commercial Vehicles show in Hannover, Germany, Dainese and Iveco present new solutions for protecting the occupants of light and heavy commercial trucks, marking the first use of D-air in the automotive field.
  • 2013: BMW and Dainese begin a partnership to integrate D-air for racetrack use in the leather suit dedicated to the BMW 1000 RR, the DoubleR Race AIR BMW suit.
  • 2014: D-air for road use passes tests carried out by the French Sécurité Réparation Automobiles (SRA).
  • 2014: Ducati and Dainese announce the launch of the first D-air for road use to be fully integrated with a motorcycle, the Ducati Multistrada D-air.*
  • May 2015: D-air for racetrack use becomes an open platform, as D-air Armor is integrated into the products of other motorcycle-garment manufacturers, enabling more riders to take advantage of the safety provided by the Dainese D-air system.*
  • June 2015: Dainese and Ducati receive the prestigious Professor Ferdinand Porsche award, for pioneering research and development work in the field of automotive engineering with the Ducati Multistrada D-air.
  • September 2015: Dainese celebrates 1,000 deployments of the D-air systems and presents the D-air Misano 1000, a leather jacket with a stand-alone electronically deployed airbag system for road use.
  • October 2015: After five years of intense collaboration with the FIS, including telemetry data collection begun in January 2011, D-air Ski is officially used in Alpine Skiing World Cup speed-discipline races during 2015/2016 season, protecting a number of skiers on the American, Canadian, Austrian and Italian Teams.*
  • December 2015: D-air Ski is deployed for the first time during an official race of the Alpine Skiing World Cup, in Italy, likely preventing further thoracic injuries to Olympic downhill gold medalist Matthias Mayer.*
*Indicates a first in the area of airbag technology.
 
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