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15 March 2022MedtechAlex Baldwin

Therabody launches infringement charge against TJ Maxx, others

Therabody has sued TJ Maxx’s parent company, alongside five “unauthorised” Amazon resellers for patent and trademark infringement, claiming they sell “knockoff” massage gun products.

The lawsuits, filed across US District Courts in Delaware, California, Florida, Texas and New York claim that the stores stock percussive massagers that infringe IP related to its branded massage devices.

Benjamin Nazarian, CEO of Therabody said in a statement on the lawsuits: "It is disappointing and surprising when a large, sophisticated retailer such as TJ Maxx not only chooses to sell knockoff triangle-shaped devices that infringe our patents but also devices that use our trademarked Theragun name.

“We believe that infringing products like these intentionally trade on Therabody's name and reputation, and they hurt our brand and deceive consumers who think they are getting the benefits of a Theragun, but end up with inferior products."

This marks the fourth lawsuit Theragun has levied against TJ Maxx’s parent company TJX Companies. While the lawsuit filed on Wednesday, March 9, alleges patent infringement, the prior lawsuits claim the store is also guilty of trademark infringement, trade dress infringement, unfair competition, false designation of origin, and other grounds.

‘Lost market share’

The complaint targeting TJX Companies was filed to the US District Court for the District of Delaware on March 9.

In the suit, Therabody alleges that TJ Maxx infringes 12 of its massage gun patents by continuing to sell the infringing products despite being notified that the products infringed its patents. Therabody claims that TJ Maxx has yet to respond to its initial email.

Throughout the complaint, Therabody points out similarities between its own massage guns, and several infringing devices available to buy at TJ Maxx.

The company claimed that the sales of these devices have led to the lost market share that will be “difficult, if not impossible” to recoup later as the devices become entrenched with retail sellers and trainers who recommend it to their clients”.

Therabody argued that it was the first company to offer and patent the percussive massage devices and that the infringing devices are attempting to undercut its products by being offered at a lower price point.

The company has asked the court for injunctive action preventing the sale of these products and a judgment ordering TJ Maxx to recall the infringing devices, as well as ask the outlet to pay damages.

Amazon suits

The five lawsuits targeting Amazon resellers claim that the online storefronts are guilty of trademark infringement, unfair competition and deceptive trade practices.

It says that it has removed “more than 1,000” unauthorised Theragun resellers from the e-commerce platform, claiming that the sales were detrimental to consumers as they were not covered by warranty.

Since 2020, Therabody has filed more than 14 lawsuits to enforce its patented technology against alleged infringers.

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