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News: Zamperla Wins Trademark Infringement Suit


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ORLANDO, Florida — Zamperla SpA and Zamperla Inc., manufacturers and distributors of quality amusement rides announced November 13, 2012, that they obtained judgments in Federal Court in Orange County Florida against three amusement ride manufacturers in excess of 138 Million US Dollars. The verdicts were based on violations of Florida’s Unfair Competition Law, the Florida Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act, Common Law Trademark Infringement and Unfair Competion under the Lanham Act.

 

In his ruling favoring Zamperla, Federal Court Judge Roy B. Dalton found that the defendant’s actions in copying Zamperla ‘s products to be “deliberate, willful and intentional.” The court further stated, in issuing a Permanent Injunction barring the defendants for continuing their illegal copying of Zamperla products: “The public interest is served in this case because an injunction will ensure imitation amusement rides, which may not meet the safety standards of the Zamperla Plaintiffs’ rides, are not passed off as, or confused with the amusement rides manufactured and sold by the Zamperla Plaintiffs.” The final judgment further provided for triple damages, as allowed under the Lanham Act. In achieving the verdicts Zamperla demonstrated that the defendants had copied at lease 183 rides of Zamerla’s design.

 

The defendants are Golden Horse Amusement Equipment Co. Ltd. who was found to have illegally copied at least 83 rides and adjudged liable for $91,219,767.00, Beijing Tongjunweida Play Equipment Co. Ltd. who copied at least 34 rides is liable for $2,410,650.00 and Beijing Jiuhua Amusement Rides Manufacturing Co. Ltd. who copied at least 66 rides is liable for $45,237,378.00. Each of the three companies are based in China.

 

IAAPA (the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions), is presently holding its annual trade show in Orlando Florida. On Tuesday afternoon Federal Marshals seized all materials in the trade show booths of the defendants and served them with papers requiring them to appear for additional legal proceedings.

 

Zamperla was represented by amusement industry attorney Tom Sheehan, of the Sheehan Firm PC, working with Orange County Counsel, Ric Keller of Hill, Rugh, Keller & Main, P.L.

 

From Amusement Today.

 

I wonder if this could be the end of these horrendous Chinese knockoffs?

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I've always thought it was odd that the chinese manufacturers actually exhibit at IAAPA. Bet this will be their last year after this judgement! I'm also sure they'll still continue to sell them to the rest of the world with no problems.

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Here's a link to the story: http://www.amusementtoday.com/zamperla-awarded-judgement-for-trademark-infringement/

 

IAAPA (the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions), is presently holding its annual trade show in Orlando Florida. On Tuesday afternoon Federal Marshals seized all materials in the trade show booths of the defendants and served them with papers requiring them to appear for additional legal proceedings.

 

I wish I was there to see that! Did anyone not see this coming? I wonder if Vekoma will sue now.

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Golden Horse will probably be more receptive to negotiating a licence that is favourable to Zamperla and other vendors after paying this type of fine. There will always be a market for similar/ generic lower priced items of exceptional low quality. Here's looking at you Dollarama and Wal-Mart

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I wonder if Maurer could sue as well. The Golden Horse spinning coaster cars look very similar to the ones produced by Maurer Shone although I feel it is a bit of a stretch. I do agree that their inverted coasters are direct rip offs of Vekoma SLCs.

 

Vekoma SLC (Shenlin w/Helix):

 

Golden Horse Inverted Coaster:

Edited by Zem
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How much does Golden Horse ripoff though, just the Victory Kingdom SLC? At least they make some stuff that's their own?

 

The BIG ripoff company was there though, the Beijing Shibaolai one! I went by them in the morning and they had brochures and everything. I couldn't bring myself to get closer than about 10 feet as I figured I might not be able to control myself and start yelling at them!!!!

 

Now I wish I had gone and picked up one of their brochures!

 

I'll go check early this morning and see what's going on.

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How much does Golden Horse ripoff though, just the Victory Kingdom SLC? At least they make some stuff that's their own?

 

The BIG ripoff company was there though, the Beijing Shibaolai one!

 

Well, if you go back and look at my updated pictures, you can see that Golden Horse stole an entire coaster while Beijing Shibaolai only stole the track type and cars. All of Beijing Shibaolai's inverted coasters are a unique layout that isn't from Vekoma. You can see that below. Besides that and a couple other rides they don't seem to have coped too much. It seems mainly they just make kiddie rides like jungle mouses and then these knock off Vekoma SLCs. Golden Horse has several copies of the SLC (Shenlin w/Helix) model.

 

 

EDIT: Beijing Jiuhua has one of the Beijing Shibaolai SLC knock offs too but mainly makes Wild Mouses. They clearly knocked off this Zamperla mouse design which is what I'm guessing the lawsuit was for:

 

Zamperla:

 

Beijing Jiuhua:

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The BIG ripoff company was there though, the Beijing Shibaolai one!

 

Don't they have a few coasters operating in Mexico? That's an uneasy thought!

 

This news couldn't have come at a more perfect time. I'm doing a research project on manufacturing companies like these, so it's very intriguing to see the rightful owners of the intellectual property starting to take some action. I am surprised to see that it was Zamperla making the claims though, like others have mentioned, I thought that it would have been Vekoma. Does anyone happen to know what designs from Zamperla were imitated?

 

EDIT: Never mind. Thanks Zem

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How much does Golden Horse ripoff though, just the Victory Kingdom SLC? At least they make some stuff that's their own?

 

The BIG ripoff company was there though, the Beijing Shibaolai one! I went by them in the morning and they had brochures and everything. I couldn't bring myself to get closer than about 10 feet as I figured I might not be able to control myself and start yelling at them!!!!

 

Now I wish I had gone and picked up one of their brochures!

 

I'll go check early this morning and see what's going on.

 

I was wondering if you'd witnessed any "drama" on the IAPPA floor concerning Golden Horse and the other Chinese cloners.

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It will be interesting to see how this plays out. Probably going to be more lawsuits before this is settled. They probably will be able to stop them from selling outside of China but internally they can do what ever their government permits.

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I wonder if this will spark more lawsuits to get started/more power behind them.

 

This is certainly the largest ruling I can remember, I can't imagine this will stop copycats but it will hopefully push them back a bit!

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They knocked off many, off the top of my head they copied:

 

Zamperlas Star Flyer

Zamperlas Balloon Race

Zamperlas Discovery

Zamperlas Telecombat

 

And many more (there is so many it's hard to list them all)

 

Link to Zamperlas site: http://www.zamperla.com/en/

Link to Golden Horeses site: http://goldenhorserides.com/en/index.html

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I also didn't realise quite how many different rides these companies made! I wouldn't have thought Zamperla would have more than 30 products on the market even!

 

Or is the number referencing patent infringements (which could be multiple per ride/product)?

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