The patent dispute in the Swedish High Court of Justice between HTC Sweden, the Swedish government through the Swedish Civil Aviation Administration (LFV) and 3M’s distributor is now settled with HTC Sweden as the winner. According to the High Court of Justice, HTC’s European patent for Twister™ is completely valid and HTC own the exclusive rights of the Twister™ technology and its methods.
The verdict means that the High Court of Justice unambiguously establishes that HTC’s European patent is valid and will probably hold in a final trial. This means that 3M’s plagiarism of HTC’s invention, Twister™, isn’t allowed to be sold in Sweden. It also means that LFV isn’t allowed to use the 3M product. Breaches against the verdict could lead to a fine of 500,000 Swedish kronor. Furthermore, this considerably strengthens HTC’s possibilities to internationally defend their invention, Twister™.
“A great victory and a joy to see such a well analysed and supported verdict”, says Håkan Thysell, founder of HTC and the inventor of Twister™.
The background of the patent dispute
Twister™ represents a revolution in the cleaning industry with chemical free cleaning, which at the same time creates amazingly clean and shiny floors. It replaces all conventional products for floor cleaning and related chemicals, which consequently forms a large commercial threat towards 3M and the suppliers of chemicals. This is why 3M plagiarised HTC’s invention and started selling it internationally, despite the fact the HTC hold a granted patent at EPO (the European Patent Office). Since LFV and 3M’s distributor City Papper, despite requests from HTC, refused to respect the patent, HTC was forced to sue them to defend its rights to the invention. 3M however promised to pay LFV’s expenses if they lost the dispute. LFV and 3M had also filed a joint counter complaint towards HTC where they demand that HTC’s European patent of the Twister™ system is suspended. However, the verdict means that the High Court of Justice makes the assessment that this will not be succeeded.
Chemical free cleaning with Twister™
Twister™ is a unique cleaning system with diamond impregnated pads for cleaning machines invented by Håkan Thysell, founder of HTC. This method facilitates completely chemical-free cleaning, i.e. significant environmental benefits, as well as better results and lower costs, in other words this is a typical example of a Clean Tech product! By eliminating the need for both conventional cleaning pads and floor cleaning chemicals and achieving a very rapid breakthrough in an increasingly environmentally-aware market, Twister™ represents a threat for many large companies which today dominate this market. The product has quickly become an unbelievably immense commercial success and approximately 1,000,000 Twister™ pads have already been delivered. HTC has a method patent for the use of Twister™ and international agreements both for distribution and use of Twister™ has been signed with many of the major operators within the cleaning industry. Twister™ will consistently be a corner stone in the new concepts for environmental cleaning which are being prepared all over the world right now, the so called Green Cleaning! Leading multiple stores organisations like ICA, CO-OP, Willys, Tesco, Harrods, ASDA, Metro and more already use the system in the daily cleaning of their stores.
Håkan Thysell, CEO, HTC Sweden AB, Tel: +46 (0)121- 294 00
Sten Jeansson, Business Development Director, HTC Sweden AB, Tel: +46 (0)121- 294 00