On March 18, 2016, Varidesk LLC of Coppell, Texas (“Varidesk”) filed a complaint requesting that the ITC commence an investigation pursuant to Section 337.

The complaint alleges that Nortek, Inc. of Providence, Rhode Island and Ergotron, Inc. of St. Paul, Minnesota (collectively, “Nortek”) unlawfully import into the U.S., sell for importation, and/or sell within the U.S. after importation certain height-adjustable desk platforms and components thereof that infringe one or more claims of U.S. Patent Nos. 9,113,703 (the ‘703 patent) and 9,277,809 (the ‘809 patent) (collectively, the “asserted patents”).

According to the complaint, the asserted patents generally relate to a novel adjustable desk platform that allows a user to move seamlessly from a sitting to a standing position. Pivot arms allow the desk platform to move between fully raised and fully lowered positions. One or more locking mechanisms allow the desk platform to be positioned at various heights between fully raised and fully lowered positions. Further, keyboard support assemblies provide additional functionality.

In the complaint, Varidesk states that Nortek imports and sells products that infringe the asserted patents. The complaint specifically refers to the WORKFIT-T, WORKFIT-TL, and WORKSPACE LIFT35 as infringing products.

Regarding domestic industry, Varidesk states that its PRO, PRO PLUS, LAPTOP, and CUBE series product lines practice the inventions of the asserted patents. Varidesk further states that it conducts significant and substantial activities related to its domestic industry products at its Texas headquarters, including engineering, research and development, design, product support, prototyping, manufacturing support, warranty service, and repair.

As to related litigation, Varidesk states that it is currrently involved in an ITC investigation (Inv. No. 337-TA-970) where it has asserted the ‘703 patent against Brunswick Corp. See our November 5, 2015 post for more details. However, Varidesk states that the 970 investigation and related district court litigation were recently settled, and that ALJ Theodore R. Essex granted a motion to terminate the 970 investigation on February 25, 2016. Varidesk further states that on March 18, 2016, it filed a complaint against Nortek in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas alleging infringement of the asserted patents.

With respect to potential remedy, Varidesk requests that the Commission issue a limited exclusion order and cease and desist orders directed at Nortek and related entities.