Nike files lawsuit against Adidas
Nike Inc filed a patent infringement lawsuit against Adidas-Salomon AG, claiming its archrival makes shoes using elements of Nike's SHOX cushioning technology.
Beaverton-based Nike alleges the new Kevin Garnett signature shoe by Adidas and its A3 shoes are among the footwear that violate the Nike patent.
"Despite Nike's patent protection, Adidas has built shoes that use Nike's technology," Nike spokesman Vada Manager said yesterday.
Adidas officials at the German company's US headquarters in Portland were not immediately available for comment.
The complaint was filed in US District Court in Lufkin, Texas, because the court has "expertise in complex intellectual property cases" and can resolve it more quickly, Manager said.
Nike, now the world's largest athletic shoe and clothing manufacturer, began developing the cushioning technology almost 20 years ago when it trailed Reebok International Ltd as the No 2 shoe maker.
Adidas, now the No 2 manufacturer, last month completed its $3.8 billion (euro3.2 billion) purchase of Reebok, moving it closer in sales to Nike.
The SHOX technology was introduced in 2000 after the original Nike Air shoe debuted in 1979. Since then, Nike has produced numerous shoes based on the SHOX design.
The latest version finally eliminates foam from the midsole of a shoe that relies on air cushioning in a design first suggested to Nike by aerospace engineer Frank Rudy.