| Connect Follow us on Twitter Like us on Facebook
About | Subscribe | Advertise


Download our free Bridge Coating Systems eResource Book

Paint and Coatings Industry News

Main News Page

Stopaq Wins Pipe Coating Patent Suit

Monday, March 19, 2012

More items for Coating Materials

Comment | More

A Dutch innovator has won a major patent victory against pipeline coating multinational Canusa-CPS in what the winner is calling a “real David and Goliath story.”

David, in this case, is the Dutch company Stopaq, developer of Wrappingband, a corrosion protection coating in wrap form for transmission pipelines.

 Stopaq (left); Canusa (right)

 Stopaq (left); Canusa (right)

The German court held that Wrapid Bond (illustrated at right), a wraparound corrosion protective coating, copied Stopaq’s proprietary visco-elastic pipeline coating in wrap form (left).

Toronto-based Canusa-CPS (Goliath) also supplies products and systems for onshore and offshore pipeline corrosion and thermal protection. Canusa is a division of ShawCor Ltd., a global energy services company specializing in products and services for pipelines and pipe services. ShawCor’s other divisions include Bredero Shaw, the world’s largest pipeline coating concern.

Recall Ordered

In a decision issued Friday (March 16), Germany’s Landgericht Mannheim ruled that Canusa’s Wrapid Bond product had “copied Stopaq’s proprietary visco-elastic technology,” according to Stopaq. The German regional court is one of the world’s leading patent courts.

The ruling says Canusa must:

• Stop offering or placing its Wrapid Bond product on the German market;

• Notify customers that Wrapid Bond “may not be used for corrosion protection purposes unless a license from Stopaq is obtained”;

• Recall Wrapid Bond from distribution channels;

• Provide Stopaq with detailed information on the origin and sales channels of Wrapid Bond; and

• Compensate Stopaq for any damage incurred by the patent infringement.

The ruling, which applies only to the German market, is not yet available in English. Canusa-CPS did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Visco-Elastic Pipeline Coating

Stopaq’s Wrappingband, used in corrosion protection and rehabilitation, is designed for onshore, offshore and subsea pipeline applications. The visco-elastic coating contains a proprietary composition of fully amorphous polyisobutene polymers. Like Wrappingband, Canusa’s Wrapid Bond is billed as a visco-elastic system for corrosion protection on aboveground and underground pipelines.

Last year, Stopaq won a related action filed in the Netherlands by Canusa, which was trying to bring Wrapid Bond to the Dutch market. Stopaq prevailed in that action as well.

2-Year Suit

The new German verdict, by a three-judge panel, follows two years of litigation. The case named ShawCor; its president and CEO, W.P. Buckley; Canusa-CPS; its vice president Ron Dunn; and two German sales representatives.

In a statement, Stopaq said Canusa “tried to deny any responsibility for the distribution of the product in Germany in an effort to evade a judgment.”

Stopaq also said that ShawCor and Canusa argued during the case that they produced “up to 20” different versions of Wrapid Bond, although the companies advertise a single product under that name.

The apparent discrepancy “raises serious question of product uniformity,” Stopaq says.

The case included multiple lab analyses and expert opinions by each party, as well as an independent expert from the respected Fraunhofer Institute, to review the products and claims.

‘Real Vindication’

Stopaq founder and owner Frans Nooren called the verdict “a historic day for our company” and “a real David and Goliath story.”

“In all my years as a businessman and inventor, I have never been so upset by such a ruthless pursuit of business at all costs,” Nooren said. “I kept asking myself, ‘Why is Shawcor involved in this? They have many patents, and I’m certain they want people to respect their intellectual property.’”

Stopaq CEO Frits Doddema called the verdict “a real vindication,” adding: “I hope this verdict will send a strong signal to other markets that copying technology is illegal and sooner or later there will be justice.”

‘Dissuasive Effect’

Despite Stopaq’s two victories, the dispute is not over. Wrapid Bond is still available worldwide, and the court cases to date apply only to sales in Germany and the Netherlands.

Meanwhile, another piece of the Stopaq German litigation—involving the same parties and products, but different patents—is still working its way through court. That case is scheduled to be heard in October.

Nathan Harris, an intellectual property attorney who is advising the Stopaq board on the litigation, declined to say Monday whether Stopaq would pursue action against Wrapid Bond in other countries.

However, he noted Germany’s economic influence in the European Union and added: “Because this court is so well known and the issues have been so thoroughly reviewed, we hope this will have a dissuasive effect.”


Tagged categories: Corrosion; Lawsuits; Offshore; Pipelines; ShawCor

Comment Join the Conversation:

Sign in to our community to add your comments.

International Paint LLC
Rapid cure, high temperature lining

AkzoNobel introduces Enviroline 405HTR, an ultra-low VOC lining. 405HTR offers rapid return to service, and excellent chemical resistance at high temperatures.

Polyval Coatings
Polyflex® Polyurea Linings

Polyflex™ new Polyurea Geotextile Membrane System has been specifically engineered to protect the environment in containment applications.

Carboline Company
Fireproofing Solutions

Pyroclad® X1 Thermo-Lag® Pyrocrete® – protecting against hydrocarbon and jet fires, explosions, and cryogenic spills.

New resins from BASF will have metals loving water:

Excellent corrosion resistance, low VOC, high gloss, thin films

Termarust Technologies
Termarust (HR CSA) Chemically Stops
Active Corrosion

Hydro Utility Penstock Overcoated in 1997. Was power washed and overcoated with major cost saving. No environmental impact with Termarust's low LC50 of 41,007 ppm.

Chicago Corrosion Group
Vendor-neutral corrosion consulting

When reliability is paramount.
For more information,
call 877-516-9514

U.S. Zinc
Logistics. Rely On U.S.

Whether via rail, truck, sea or air, you can trust our logistics services to deliver the product you need on time, every time.

Jessup Manufacturing Company
More Traction for Extreme Marine Conditions

Jessup Safety Track® 3800 Military Grade peel-and-stick non-skid tapes and treads provide extra slip resistance for decks. MIL-PRF-24467C Type XI, Black & Gray.

Mitsubishi Gas Chemical America
Performance Amine 1,3-BAC

A highly reactive cycloaliphatic diamine offering superior performance. Reasonable cost and curing efficacy makes it suitable for all types of epoxy resin applications.

Sherwin-Williams Protective & Marine Coatings

With 4,000 distribution points and 3,700+ years of experience, Sherwin-Williams delivers the products, support and expertise you need, right where you need it.

Technology Publishing

The Technology Publishing Network

The Journal of Protective Coatings & Linings (JPCL) PaintSquare
Durability + Design Paint BidTracker

EXPLORE:      JPCL   |   PaintSquare News   |   Interact   |   Buying Guides   |   Webinars   |   Resources   |   Classifieds
REGISTER AND SUBSCRIBE:      Free PaintSquare Registration   |   Subscribe to JPCL   |   Subscribe to PaintSquare News
MORE:      About   |   Privacy policy   |   Terms & conditions   |   Site Map   |   Search   |   Contact Us

© Copyright 2000-2015, Technology Publishing / PaintSquare, All rights reserved
2100 Wharton Street, Suite 310, Pittsburgh PA 15203-1951; Tel 1-412-431-8300; Fax 1-412-431-5428; E-mail