BLOOMBERG : Gevo Wins Ruling for No Infringement of Butamax Patent
Gevo Inc. (GEVO), a U.S. biofuel producer, won a federal court ruling that it doesn’t infringe a Butamax Advanced Biofuels LLC patent for a method to commercially produce isobutanol.
U.S. District Judge Sue Robinson in Wilmington, Delaware, ruled today that “as a matter of law,” Gevo doesn’t infringe Butamax’s patent under the so-called doctrine of equivalents. The judge agreed with Gevo that the difference between its method and Butamax’s wasn’t insubstantial as Butamax argued.
Butamax is a joint venture between BP Plc (BP/) and DuPont Co. (DD) Pam Schools, a spokeswoman for Butamax, didn’t immediately respond to a phone call after regular business hours seeking comment on the ruling.
Butamax sued Gevo, backed by the oil refiner Total SA and specialty-chemicals maker Lanxess AG (LXS), in 2011, alleging misuse of technology for genetically engineered microorganisms used to produce biofuels. Robinson last year denied Butamax’s bid to block Gevo’s fuel sales.
The case is Butamax Advanced Biofuels LLC v. Gevo Inc., 11- cv-00054, U.S. District Court, District of Delaware (Wilmington).
IT IS ORDERED that
1. Butamax's summary judgment motion of infringement of the '188 and '889
patents (D. I. 595) is denied.
2. Gevo's motion for summary judgment of non-infringement of the '188 and
'889 patents (D.I. 61 0) is granted in part and denied in part. The motion is granted as
to no infringement under the doctrine of equivalents.
3. Gevo's motion for summary judgment of invalidity (D. I. 598) is granted in part and denied in part. The motion is granted as to the invalidity of claim 12 and 13 of the
'889 patent for lack of written description and enablement.
4. Butamax's cross-motion of no invalidity of the '889 patent (D.I. 622) is granted
in part and denied in part. The motion is granted as to no invalidity of claim 8 for
5. Butamax and DuPont's motion to exclude testimony by Gevo's experts with
respect to the '188 patent and '376 patent is denied as it relates to the '188 patent.
(D.I. 640) The court reserves its decision as it relates to the '376 patent.
How do you get a ruling from a judge before the appeal process even begins ? If I were DuPont I would be wanting to know what happened to my promised day in court. If there was going to be some kind of ruling that would not allow for the appeal process to occur then the hearing and pre-trial would not be on tomorrow's docket.