PLEASANTON, Calif. — Safeway here, and its subsidiaries Blackhawk Network, Blackhawk Marketing and Randalls/Tom Thumb, is facing an intellectual property lawsuit of patent infringement and stolen trade secrets of Excentus' fuelperks! program.
Excentus Corp., Irving, Texas, filed the lawsuit yesterday in the U.S. District Court of the Northern District of Texas Abilene Division.
The suit alleges willful and deliberate patent infringement and the misappropriation and theft of trade secrets, among other things, and seeks injunctive and equitable relief along with unspecified damages.
During 2006 and 2007, Safeway, through its Blackhawk subsidiaries, attempted to acquire Excentus as well as the patents owned by Auto-Gas Systems, which are now owned by Excentus. The lawsuit states that Safeway and Blackhawk misappropriated the information once they ended talks of acquiring Excentus and Auto-Gas in 2007.
The suit alleges that after Blackhawk failed to complete a transaction with either party, Safeway wrongfully used the patents, trade secrets and confidential information belonging to Excentus to develop its fuel rewards program called PowerPump Rewards, launched last year.
Excentus’ complaint also asserts that Safeway’s PowerPump Rewards program is a willful and deliberate infringement of four patents owned by Excentus.
A Safeway spokesperson declined to comment on the suit.
Read More of Today's Headlines