Pfizer, Inc. Must Pay $143 Million to Trovan, Ltd. in Largest Trademark Judgment Ever Awarded in the United States

Pfizer, Inc. must cease using "Trovan" name to market its antibiotic

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 12, 1999

Los Angeles, CA -- A 7-panel jury awarded $143 million to Trovan, Ltd. today after 7 hours of deliberation in its trademark infringement suit against Pfizer, Inc. (NYSE:PFE), making it the largest judgment of its kind awarded in the United States. The trial started August 18 and the liability phase ended September 22 in a unanimous verdict for Trovan, Ltd., with the jury finding Pfizer, Inc. liable for willful, bad faith trademark infringement and unfair competition. US District Court Judge Lourdes G. Baird presided over the case. Trovan, Ltd. vs. Pfizer, Inc. [CV 98-0094 LGB (Mcx)]. Judge Baird will rule on Plaintiffsí claim that they are entitled to the profits Pfizer, Inc. earned from sales of the "Trovan" antibiotic as early as Friday.

"We are pleased with the outcome," said Joseph Masin, President of Electronic Identification Devices, "because it proves that we Davids of this world can prevail over the ëGoliathsí of this world. By finding for us, the jury sent Pfizer a clear message that they would not tolerate or excuse bad faith conduct on any level."

"Regardless of size," explained Masin, "a companyís reputation is everything. We worked hard to build Trovan® into a respectable name long before Pfizer began infringing on our trademark: and protecting that reputation was the impetus behind this lawsuit, it was never about money. With this victory, we can continue to grow our company knowing, once and for all, that Trovan® is indisputably ours."

Since 1989, Plaintiff has used the Trovan® trademark to globally market its system of biomedical electronic identification devices, and holds federal trademark registration No. 1649328 issued in 1991 by the US Patent & Trademark Office. In 1997, Trovan, Ltd. learned that Pfizer, Inc. was going to introduce and market a new antibiotic under the Trovan name, which it did in 1998, even though Plaintiff had already filed this lawsuit. In 1999, the "Trovan" antibiotic was linked to multiple possible deaths and is currently under investigation by the US Food & Drug Administration, the European Union and Ralph Naderís Public Citizen.

Trovan, Ltd. is a British corporation based in Douglas, Isle of Man, and owns the Trovan® trademark. Electronic Identification Devices, Ltd. is a California corporation based in Santa Barbara and is the exclusive North American distributor and a licensee of Trovan® products. Trovan, Ltd. also controls a portfolio of valuable patents for technology products such as RFIDs (radio frequency identification) systems, which it has most recently defended against Swiss RFID manufacturer Sokymat. In that litigation, Trovan won a judgment against Sokymat.

Press Contact: Kathy Pinckert, 310-836-8355

ISO 11784/85 Update - WG3 meeting in Wageningen

The meeting opened at 13:00h on 13 September, 1999, in Wageningen, Holland. At the Opening and Welcome the Swedish and Chilean delegates requested permission to record the meeting--on audio tape and video respectively. The requests were denied.

Subsequently, the Canadian delegate, Mr. John Vrolijk requested clarification of whether parliamentary proceedings would be used in the meeting, with items to be moved, seconded and voted on (as per Henderson's Parliamentary Guide) and made a motion to the effect that Henderson's Parliamentary procedure be used. The motion was not accepted by the Chairman. The Chairman questioned the need for parliamentary procedure, and after consultation with Mr. Zens (who was in attendance) and who indicated that there was no set procedure stating that some working groups were conducted according to parliamentary procedure while others were conducted on the basis of consensus. At that point, the Chair decided that WG3 works "on the basis of consensus." He stated that there would however be votes on issues if it was found that consensus was not possible. Throughout the meeting various issues were raised, some from the Chair, others from the floor. At no time was consensus sought or were any items voted on.

There was no democratic process regarding discussion of items on the agenda or new items brought forward from the floor. Motions from the floor were called out of order.When the Chairman tabled the agenda item "Approval of the draft agenda", the representative from Sweden requested that the discussion regarding the modification of ISO 11784/85 be dealt with right after approval of the minutes and before the TWG items because the TWG proposal is dependent on what modifications are made to ISO 11784/85. The Swedish delegate's request was accepted. When the Chairman tabled the agenda item "Approval of the minutes of the last meeting in Lugano" (doc. N219), the Russian delegate stated that the minutes of the Lugano meeting had to be corrected, specifically the item concerning implementation of ISO 11784 and 11785 around the world. Russia's report that ISO 11784'85 is not being implemented due to serious flaws was not recorded in the minutes.

Mr. Gary Burch of New Zealand stated that the outcome of the TC28 vote (joint Australian and New Zealand committe for animal RFID) was incorrectly recorded. The Australia-New Zealand joint committee had in fact rejected ISO 11784/85 in their May vote.

Mr. John Vrolijk of Canada stated that the deliberation that took place in Lugano regarding the suggestion that ISO 14223 be rolled into ISO 11784/85 in order to prevent confusion and to simplify implementation, a point raised by Ms. Emmeninger of Datamars, was not recorded in the minutes. Subsequently, Mr. Ingo Grotewahl, the Swedish delegate, requested that the count of nations on N139 (tally of votes on Gosstandard Motion) be revised. Sweden has previously advised Mr. Zens in writing that the Swedish vote is to be recorded as "Favouring revision of ISO 11784/85", and that consequently the tally should be 13:12 in favour of revision.

Mr. Burch of New Zealand pointed out that the New Zealand vote was fraught with difficulties because of the wording of Mr. Zens' request accompanying the ballot. New Zealand had previously advised Mr. Zens several times to correct the allocation of the New Zeland vote as "supporting the addition of the new item of work" and "prepared to participate in the development of the project." Mr. Burch requested that the New Zealand vote be deleted from the column of nations opposing the work item and counted as favouring the revision and willing to work on the standard. He stated that the resulting tally of nations is in fact 14 to 11 in favour of revision of ISO 11784/85 rather than 12:12.

Neither statement was challenged in the meeting. Mr. Zens, who was present, stated that he was unaware of the complaints and that he will not change the ballot.

Attendees from Slovakia, Czech Republic, Russia, Chile, Austria and Iceland were present, some for the first time; it appears that these nations are not adequately informed as to the workings of WG3 and therefore were not able to contribute as they may otherwise have done. Nor did they receive information relating to how WG3 worked nor were they ever advised of where minutes of past meetings would be available. The Czech delegate stated that he was concerned that delegates and national institutes from the Eastern European countries (i.e. Russia, Slovak Republic etc.) did not receive invitations and documentation for this meeting in time, or in fact at all.

When the document entitled "Draft report of the ad hoc committee" was presented by Mr. Mans Jansen, head of TWG, his treatment of Mr. Anisimov (the Russian delegate) during his presentation was acusatory and intimidating. Mr. Jansen intentionally distorted the proposal put forward by Gosstandard in its submission to WG3, particularly those concerning the requirement for code uniqueness in the standard in order to embarrass the delegate. Without requesting permission, he got up, walked across the room and positioned himself inches away from the Russian delegate thrusting papers in his face while speaking in a heated, accusatory tone. The chairman allowed this to continue at length and did not call Mr. Jansen to order.

Mr. Vrolijk, a member of the 7-member ad hoc committee, asked why the ad hoc committee was not consulted in the creation of the TWG document, as the proposal entitled "draft report of the ad hoc committee" was in fact prepared in its entirety by TWG. The chairman did not at any time have the ad hoc committee evalute and discuss the work item. The ad hoc committee was never convened and no discussion happened telephonically or by fax or by any other means of communication. The ad hoc committee was merely requested to "approve" (i.e. rubber stamp) the conclusions set out in the TWG report.

Mr. Vrolijk also pointed out that the report dismissed out of hand the proposals made by three countries that sent contributions, and did not reflect the concerns of those nations that were not given the opportunity to participate.

Mr. Burch of New Zealand made the point that TWG consists of manufacturers who have explicitly stated in writing that they are "not willing to continue to discuss" modification of ISO 11784 and ISO 11785. Mr. Burch referenced these companies' "Joint Statement of the Manufacturers" which was submitted to SC19 in March of 1998, and by which they have effectively disqualified themselves from further work on the standard.

The chairman stated that there were only two responses: from Italy and from Russia. John Vrolijk stated that there were actually three, since Brazil had also submitted a report. He also stated that insufficient time was given for a response by interested SC19 member nations. The time for submission of proposals was only one month from the date of the Lugano meeting, which is not enough time to develop a comprehensive response at the national level. The document entitled "Procedure to update ISO 11784 and 11785" was in fact only circulated by the chairman after the deadline for contributions had passed.

Mr. Vrolijk was chastised by the Chairman for taking it upon himself to invite participation of SC19 member nations who had stated on their ballots that they were prepared to participate in the work process. When it was pointed out that Mr. Vrolijk's invitations were in fact the only invitations ever sent out by anyone on the ad hoc committee, and when asked why he had not issued a formal invitation himself, as Chairman of the ad hoc committee, the Chairman stated that he didn't get around to it because of his father's illness.

The WG3 press release regarding ISO 11784 and ISO 11785 was presented in both a long and short version. It was pointed out that the long version of the press release clearly states that the standard ISO 11784/85 cannot guarantee ID code uniqueness. However, the proposed short version of the press release omits this crucial information. In fact, the word "unique" is prominent in the first sentence, thereby communicating that the uniqueness of coding is assured under ISO 11784/85. This incorrect short version was defended by its framers against objections made by a number of delegates, to the effect that it is O.K. not to tell the truth because it would help the industry, irrespective of the fact that it might be detrimental to users.

There was a brief discussion of ISO readers. The Chairman stated that only readers capable of reading FDX and HDX transponders (both types) are ISO-conforming. Only one reader was shown which could read both FDX and HDX transponders (a Destron product). However, the reader read a range of glass encapsulated transponders at a rather limited range, which is insufficient for most livestock applications.

Conclusions

The meeting was conducted in an undemocratic manner. The chairman
1 Would not allow any motions to be put forward
2 Would not allow voting of any kind
3 Never asked for or received a consensus on any of the issues presented at the meeting
4 Allowed very little discussion on any of the issues presented at the meeting.
5 Dissent on any issue was not allowed.

In fact, the individual agenda items were summarised on transparencies that were shown at the conclusion of each agenda item. These colour, computer-generated transparencies had been prepared in advance of the meeting, prior to the deliberation of said agenda items. It was clear that whoever prepared the transparencies already "knew" what the conclusions were to be prior to the meeting even taking place. At the end of the meeting several participants of the meeting have stated their objections to the way the meeting was conducted on the record and also objected on the record to the press release and the "Conclusion" on ISO 11784/85 which the Chairman proposes to forward to SC19.
• WG3 published a statement flatly contradicting the stated wishes of the majority of SC19 P-member nations, who had expressed their concerns with the unsuitability of the standard by voting to have it revised. The statement of purpose reads: "The approved ISO standards 11784 and 11785 as published are suitable for their intended applications and are the basis for additional standards for advanced transponders as they are in consideration in the new work item." The chairman proposed that an ad hoc committee be appointed to examine the proposals for revision that were to be submitted.
• The ad hoc committee was never convened and no discussion happened on the mandate to revise ISO 11784/85.
• The ad-hoc committee appointed by the chairman had 7 members: 6 were from nations that had voted against revision of the standard; only 1 member was from a nation in favour of revision.
• SC19 member nations were never advised by the chairman of WG3 that their input was desired.
• No action was ever taken by the chairman to advise anyone that proposals for revision of ISO 11784/85 were being solicited.
• The time for submission of proposals was one month from the date of the Lugano meeting: too short for any nation to develop a comprehensive response at the national level.
• The document "Procedure to Update ISO 11784/85" was circulated only after the deadline for submissions had passed. The only action taken by the chairman was to e-mail the TWG report to ad hoc committee members and asking ad hoc committee members to "approve" (ie.. rubber stamp) them.
• The TWG report dismissed all suggestions the three SC19 P-member nations submitted out of hand and recommended that ISO 11784 and 11785 be retained in their present form.
• There have been three counts of the P-member votes by SC19 and still there are discrepancies, as pointed out by the Swedish and New Zealand delegates. The vote in favour of revising ISO 11784 and 11785 is 14 to 11, and not 12 to 12, as stated in the back-dated document N139 rev.1.Some of the delegates travelled for over 36 hours to attend this meeting. They were made to listen to a minority group and a group of manufacturers dictate what the conclusions of WG3 were to be with no chance for input into the meeting. It is clear that interested parties are attempting to manipulate the meeting, and that the people controlling the proceedings are not concerned with having a standard that will work, only having a standard that can be used to market products under false pretences.
In order to ensure the integrity of the process on the revision of ISO 11784 and 11785, and to respect the expressed wishes of the majority of SC19 P-member nations, (1) The ad hoc committee must consist of delegates from nations that have stated they are in favour of revising ISO 11784/85 OR that they are prepared to participate in development of the project. (2) TWG must be excluded from the process. TWG has no legitimate role in the process as TWG's sole mandate is to discuss a new draft standard: ISO 14223. Furthermore, most TWG members are employees of manufacturers who have gone on the record to state that they do not want to discuss revising ISO 11784/85 See Manufacturers' Letter to SC19 There is a conflict of interest between TWG members are therefore contrary to those of the majority of SC19 P-member nations, and TWG has to be excluded on the basis of conflict of interest. (3) All those SC19 P-member nations stating that they are prepared to participate in development of the project must be given an opportunity to do so: sufficient time must be allowed for the nations to develop their responses; and formal invitations must be sent to all SC19 P-member nations that returned their ballots stating they "support the addition of the new work item to the programme of work" OR "are prepared to participate in the development of the project." (4) The responses of SC19 P-member participants should be reviewed by the ad hoc committee that was appointed to do the job. The responses should be given serious consideration and not be dismissed out of hand.

Errata

Mr. Hassan Sade stated his concern that in a discussion of the problems affecting ISO 11784/85, persons might conclude that the ID codes in Datamars transponders can be changed. Mr. Masin responded that, Datamars transponders conforming to ISO 11784/85, as long as they are read-only transponders, are not reprogrammable. The problem with ISO 11784/85 is that read-only, one-time-programmable (OTP) and write-many/read-many transponders (WMRM) are all encompassed by the standard. As a result, the code numbers of ISO 11784/85-compatible read-only transponders can be duplicated by other read-only, OTP and WMRM transponders. Also, the numbers in WMRM transponders can be changed at will. Databases allowing registration of ISO 11784/85 transponders are compromised, because there can be an unlimited number of transponders in the field "pointing" to a particular registration in the database. As far as the database is concerned, transponder number 762098100132313 is the ID number of a 3-year old German shepherd called "Hasso." The database can provide no assurance that a given German shepherd with that ID number is in fact the original "Hasso." Please click here for more information.

Source Documents to be referenced:
Manufacturers' Letter to SC19
Procedure to update ISO 11784 and 11785

Trovan, Ltd. Trademark Trial against Pfizer Inc. Starts Wednesday, August 18 in Los Angeles Federal Court

Case Has Potential To Be Largest Trademark Judgment With Damages Projected in Excess of $100 Million

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 16, 1999

Los Angeles, CA--
The Trovan, Ltd. v. Pfizer, Inc. Trial starts Wednesday, August 18 at 8:00 a.m., with voir dire beginning at 8:30 a.m., and will be heard by U.S. District Court Judge Lourdes G. Baird at the Roybal Federal Building, Room 770, 255 East Temple Street in Los Angeles. Plaintiffs Trovan, Ltd. and Electronic Identification Devices, Ltd. allege that Pfizer, Inc. (NYSE: PFE) wrongfully misappropriated their Trovan® trademark name and used it in the labeling of a new antibiotic introduced in 1998. A trial of 4-5 weeks is expected, and the case has the potential to be the largest trademark judgment ever, with damages projected in excess of $100 million.

Trovan, Ltd. has used the TROVAN® trademark since 1989 to globally market its system of biomedical electronic identification devices; holds federal trademark registration No. 164328 issued by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office in 1991; and since 1996 has owned the Internet domain name “www.trovan.com.” TROVAN® products are used worldwide by governments, universities and research facilities for human and veterinary applications, ranging from tracking blood supplies to animal control.

“We were shocked to learn that Pfizer had allegedly applied for an identical mark with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to introduce its new antibiotic,” said Joseph Masin, President of Electronic Identification Devices, Ltd. “Even though we protested and had already filed suit, they launched the product with utter disregard for our established rights in the TROVAN® brand. This suit is our only recourse to prevent any further “Goliath” tactics, and we are confident that we will prevail.

“It’s likely, explained Masin, “that Pfizer invested hundreds of millions of dollars in its campaign to market “Trovan,” enabling it to become one of the most prescribed antibiotics in the United States, but at the terrible expense of our hard earned name. Damage to our reputation continues to grow, especially with recent negative publicity linking this drug to multiple possible deaths, along with talk of potential restrictions by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration and product bans by the European Union.”

In 1997, Trovan, Ltd. learned that Pfizer, Inc. Intended to introduce a new antibiotic under the identical Trovan name in 1998. Pfizer ignored their objections, and Plaintiffs filed suit for trademark infringement and unfair competition on December 8, 1997 in Santa Barbara Superior Court [Case No. 222191]. The matter was removed to the United States District Court, Central District of California, Western Division, on January 7, 1998 [Case No. CV 98-0094 LGB (Mcx)].

Trovan, Ltd. Is a British corporation and owns the trademark TROVAN® at issue; Electronic Identification Devices, Ltd. Is a California corporation based in Santa Barbara and is the exclusive North American distributor and a licensee of TROVAN® products. Plaintiffs are represented by William E. Levin with the Laguna Beach, CA law firm of Levin & Hawes.

Press Contact: Kathy Pinckert
Dial: 310-836-8355

Trial begins tomorrow in Trovan, Ltd. v. Pfizer Inc. Trademark Infringement Federal Lawsuit

MEDIA ALERT***MEDIA ALERT***MEDIA ALERT

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 16, 1999

Los Angeles, CA--
Trial begins Wednesday, August 18, 1999 at 8:00 a.m. in the matter of Trovan, Ltd. v. Pfizer, Inc. Before the Hon. Lourdes G. Baird in U.S. District Court, Roybal Federal Building, Room 770, 255 East Temple Street, in Los Angeles, CA, with voir dire expected to start at 8:30 a.m. Followed by opening arguments. The trademark infringement and unfair competition lawsuit has the potential to be the largest trademark judgment ever, with damages projected in excess of $100 million. A 4-5 week trial is expected. Trovan, Ltd. And Electronic Identification Devices, Ltd. allege that Pfizer, Inc. Wrongfully misappropriated their Trovan® trademark name to label a new antibiotic introduced in 1998. Trovan, Ltd. has used the Trovan¨ trademark since 1989 to globally market its system of electronic identification devices for biomedical and veterinary applications; holds federal trademark registration No. 1649328 issued by the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office in 1991; and has owned the Internet domain name "www.trovan.com" since 1996. In 1997, Trovan, Ltd. Learned that Pfizer, Inc. Intended to introduce a new antibiotic in 1998 and had falsely applied for an identical mark with the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office. Over Trovan's objections and after this suit was filed, Pfizer launched a campaign to market the Trovan drug allegedly costing in the hundreds of millions of dollars; it became one of the most prescribed antibiotics in the United States, but recently has received negative publicity linking it to multiple possible deaths, along with talk of potential restrictions by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration and product bans by the European Union. Suit was filed December 8, 1997 in Santa Barbara Superior Court and removed to U.S. District Court, Central District of California, Western Division, on January 7, 1998 [Case No. CV 98-0094 LGB (Mcx)]. Trovan, Ltd. is a British corporation and owns the trademark Trovan® at issue; Joseph Masin is president of Electronic Identification Devices, Ltd., a California corporation based in Santa Barbara and the exclusive North American distributor and licensee of Trovan® products. William E. Levin with the Laguna Beach, CA law firm of Levin & Hawes represents the plaintiffs. The first day of trial starts at 8:00 a.m. Thereafter, the trial schedule is Tuesday - Friday 8:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m., lunch Noon - 1:30 p.m.

Press Contact: Kathy Pinckert
Dial: 310-836-8355 or Pager (310) 724-9554

TROVAN Products Are FDA Approved

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 21, 1999

Santa Barbara, CA--
Electronic Identification Devices, Ltd. confirmed today that its TROVAN ZIPQUILLTM Implantable Delivery Device is approved for implantation of a transponder in food animals. In his letter dated 8 May, 1998, George Graber PhD, Director Division of Animal Feeds, Center for Veterinary Medicine, confirmed that "We have reviewed your submission and find there are no human food safety concerns."

The ID-100 TROVAN implantable transponder was previously approved on February 15, 1996.

"We are very pleased that our TROVAN ZIPQUILLTM has been approved for use in animals. We are now actively seeking marketing partners for this exciting new product in the areas of animal and human pharmaceutical applications," Mr. Joseph Masin, President of Electronic Identification Devices, Ltd. said.

The TROVAN ZIPQUILLTM is a unique transponder delivery device which consists of a tiny container shaped like a bullet, which tapers to a sharp point. Inside is an ID-100A transponder. The TROVAN ZIPQUILLTM can also be used to deliver antibiotics and other pharmaceutical compounds. The TROVAN ZIPQUILLTM can be inserted very easily simply by pressing it, sharp point first, into the animal's skin with the thumb. No tools are necessary.

The TROVAN ZIPQUILLTM does not make an incision, or cut, in the skin as a syringe would. Rather it pierces the skin, allowing for rapid closure of the opening after penetration of the TROVAN ZIPQUILLTM, thereby minimising tissue damage and trauma.

For additional information in the United States please contact:
Electronic Identification Devices, Ltd.
Barbara Masin
telephone: 805-565-1288
fax: 805-565-1127
e-mail: BMasin@EIDLtd.com

Court enjoins Sokymat from infringing patent, assesses $1 million judgment

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 11, 1999

Santa Barbara, CA --
Electronic Identification Devices, Ltd. reported today that the U.S. District Court, Central District of California, Western Division, has found that defendants Sokymat S.A. and Irori infringed on U.S. Patent No. 5,281,855, issued to Trovan, Ltd., and a judgment in the amount of $1,000,000 was issued against them.

The Los Angeles Court also issued a final judgment and permanent injunction against the defendants, which prevents them from making, selling, offering for sale or using any product that infringes on U.S. Patent No. 5,281,855 in the United States. The patent describes direct bonding technology used primarily to connect antenna coils inside the transponders directly to the integrated circuit, eliminating components, and thereby lowering production costs and prices to customers and enhancing the reliability of the product. This technology is the technology of choice in automotive applications such as ignition control systems for vehicles and microtransponders used to identify animals.

The court affirmed that Sokymat S.A. et al. have no rights to U.S. Patent No. 5,281,855.

"The court's decision entitles the Plaintiffs to a comprehensive interpretation of the patent's claims" said Joseph Masin, President of Electronic Identification Devices, Ltd. "The plaintiffs will vigorously protect their intellectual property rights in all markets covered by this patent and its foreign counterparts." Trovan, Ltd. has applied for foreign counterparts in the European Patent Office, among others, including Switzerland, which is the location of Sokymat's manufacturing facility.

"We believe that the court's decision not to consider Trovan's claims of misappropriation of confidential information and title to U.S. Patent No. 5,572,410 was incorrect." said Joseph Masin. U.S. Patent No. 5,572,410, filed by Ake Gustafson, describes a machine used for coil winding and manufacture of transponders. "Based on an Agreement signed between Trovan, Ltd. and Sokymat SA, we continue to maintain that we have certain rights in U.S. Patent No. 5,572,410."

"It appears that there are presently several versions of the directly bonded product on the market," said Joseph Masin. "All versions are currently under review."

Mr. Masin has also announced that Trovan's obligations under the Agreement between Sokymat and plaintiffs dated October 20, 1998, identifying certain products, have been suspended.

For additional information in the United States please contact:
Electronic Identification Devices, Ltd.
Barbara Masin
telephone: 805-565-1288
fax: 805-565-1127
e-mail: BMasin@EIDLtd.com

Trovan Ltd. alleges fraud against Pfizer, Inc. in proposed amended complaint filed in dispute over TROVAN® Trademark

Case has potential to be the largest trademark judgment ever, with projected damages alone in excess of $100 million

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 11, 1999

Los Angeles, CA--
Trovan, Ltd. And Electronic Identification Devices, Ltd. allege fraudulent misappropriation and use of their TROVAN® trademark by Pfizer, Inc. (NYSE: PFE) in a proposed amended complaint filed late Monday in Trovan, Ltd. v. Pfizer, Inc. They also seek to globally enjoin Pfizer from unlicensed use of the TROVAN® name in marketing a new antibiotic introduced in 1998. This antibiotic has the most indications (14) approved of by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for a product of this type, and has already become the ninth most prescribed branded antibiotic in the United States. The case has the potential to be the largest trademark judgment ever, with projected damages alone in excess of $100 million.

"Typically, it costs hundreds of millions of dollars to introduce such a product into the marketplace", said Joseph Masin, president of Electronic Identification Devices, Ltd. "Yet, knowing that for almost seven years we had held the federal trademark registration for 'TROVAN', Pfizer went ahead and launched a major campaign to promote its new antibiotic, using our name. Then, with utter disregard for our name or international reputation. Pfizer fraudulently obtained and identical mark with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office."

"We filed suit", explained Masin, "and since then have been in a 'David vs. Goliath' battle with Pfizer, recently defeating their Motion for Summary Judgment [under seal]. With this proposed amended complaint, we want to move forward and prevent Pfizer from further capitalizing on the TROVAN® mark worldwide or from garnering any other financial windfall through the illusion that there is any connection between our two companies, including confusion over the Internet."

Since 1989, Trovan, Ltd. Has used the TROVAN® name to market its system of electronic identification devices, and since 1991 has held federal registration No. 1649328 for the TROVAN® mark issued by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. TROVAN® products are used worldwide by governments, universities, and research facilities for human and veterinary applications, ranging from tracking blood supplies to animal control. Since 1996, the company's internet domain address has been: www.trovan.com.

In 1997, Trovan, Ltd. learned that Pfizer, Inc. intended to introduce a new antibiotic under the identical Trovan name in 1998. After Pfizer ignored Trovan's objections, Plaintiffs filed suit for trademark infringement and unfair competition on December 8, 1997 in Santa Barbara Superior Court [Case No. 222191]. The case was removed to the United States District Court, Central District of California, Western Division, on January 7, 1998 before the Honorable Lourdes G. Baird [Case No. 98-0094 LGB (Mcx)].

Trovan, Ltd. Is a British Corporation and owns the trademark TROVAN® at issue: Electronic Identification Devices, Ltd. Is a California corporation based in Santa Barbara and is the exclusive North American distributor and a licensee of TROVAN® products. Plaintiffs are represented by William E. Levin, with the Laguna Beach, CA law firm of Levin & Hawes.

Press Contact: Kathy Pinckert
Dial: 310-836-8355

ISO 11784/85 Update - WG3 meeting in Lugano

The meeting opened at 13:00h on 26 April, 1999, in Lugano, Switzerland. At the opening of the meeting, when the agenda item "Approval of the draft agenda" was formally raised by the Chairman of the WG3, Mr. Eradus, there was a call from the floor pointing out that a letter from Mr. Zens of SC19, returning ISO 11784/85 to WG3 for revision and correction, should have been received by Mr. Eradus. Since all the subsequent agenda points depended upon the continuance of ISO 11784/85 in their present form, Mr Zens' communication should be the first item addressed by the working group. The return of the standard for revision would obviously require changes in the entire meeting agenda. Thereupon Mr. Eradus acknowledged that he had in fact received the communication. However, since the communication had been faxed to him on the proceeding Friday morning (NB: that would have been 23 April, 3 days earlier), he stated that there had not been time to have it photocopied for the WG3 meeting. Consequently, he explained, he could not distribute it to the members of the working group at this time.

Mr. Eradus stated that he would arrange to have the copies made by the following day. An objection waas made that this would not provide sufficient time for working group members to review the documentation and for the group to develop an appropriate response. (When the copies of Mr. Zens' communication were distributed the following day, it was actually dated the 14th of April , 10 days prior.)

Mr Eradus paraphrased the letter by Mr. Zens aloud. WG3 was being asked to elaborate solutions according to the proposal of the ISO Central Secretariat, taking into account the items stated in the proposal submitted by the Russian Federation and the comments contained in document N137 and N137 rev.1

It was then stated for the record that it would be necessary for WG3 to accept the mandate to revise the standard, in compliance with the wishes of the 14 "P" member nations who had expressed concerns about the flaws in ISO 11784/85.

On the second day, Mr Eradus distributed Mr. Zens' communication to the members of WG3.

The communication included several documents:

Mr Zens subsequently announced that a subcommittee to study changes in ISO 11784/85 would be formed and that the committee members would be: Mr. Cees vant Klooster (Holland), Mr. Wim Eradus (Holland), Mr. Ronny Geers (Holland), Mr. Rudolf Artman (Germany), Mr. Torben Almedal (Denmark), Mr. George Tucker (U.S.A.) and Mr. John Volijk (Canada). The composition of the committee was determined upon unilaterally by the leadership of WG3. There was no vote and no deliberation permitted on the composition of the committee.

National delegates attending the session were asked about progress in implementing ISO 11784/85 in their various countries. The delegate for the Russian Federation stated that the Russian Federation had ISO 11784/85 in suspended condition because of the problems with ISO 11784/85. The Canadian delegate stated that there are serious issues with ISO 11784/85 that need to be discussed and resolved, and that there is a problem with duplicate ID codes, and that Canada believes these issues must be addressed by WG3. Fred Nind stated that the UK was proposing to eliminate quarantine requirements for imported animals with micro chips. Lionel Sheridan, an observer from New Zealand, stated that a joint committee from New Zealand and Australia had been formed, and that the vote approving ISO 11784/85 as the national standard in both New Zealand and Australia would close on Friday 30 April and that both countries would subsequently implement ISO 11784/85 as national standards for livestock and for pet identification. **

Manufacturers present in WG3 continued to insist that there were no problems with ISO 11784 and ISO 11785 and refused to recognise that ISO 11784 and ISO 11785 in their present form are in need of revision. The minutes of the meeting, as resolved upon by WG3 members in attendance, stated that WG3 maintains the "suitability of the standard for intended applications." However, it was requested that a dissent be put on the record, stating that it was apparent that the standard was not suitable for the intended applications, and that a majority of the "P" member nations had registered their objections to the standard and that the fact that the standard was back in WG3 for revision spoke for itself.

The minutes resolved upon by the WG3 members in attendance also specified that a committee was being formed to study proposals to improve the standard.

“Proposal
(a) can be for further research
(b) proposal for update.

Proposal
  • clear description of the problem
  • written text in two columns: today's text / proposed text

To be reviewed by:
  • Cees vant Klooster, Wim Eradus, Rudolf Artman, Ronny Geers, Torben Almedal, George Tucker, Mr. John Volijk
  • WG3."

**This was not quite correct. In fact, when the vote in IT28 closed Friday 30 April, ISO 11784/85 did not reach the requisite majority approval and, per the regulations of Standards Australia, will be returned to committee.