Patent lawsuit pits makers of marine eyewear

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Cablz Inc. filed a patent infringement lawsuit against Chums Inc., saying that the company illegally used its “stay-off-the-neck” eyewear retention system.

The lawsuit in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Alabama is asking for a jury trial and compensation for the infringement of U.S. Patent 8,366,268, which protects Cablz’ unique eyewear retainer system, which is worn by anglers, hunters, skiers, boaters and outdoor enthusiasts.

The company says the system was invented by Cablz founder and CEO Ron Williams.

The Chums products that allegedly infringed on the patent include the Orbiter, the Adjustable Orbiter and the Mono Orbiter, along with private-label versions C-Line and C-Mono sold by retailers.

“We take our intellectual property rights very seriously and we’re taking the steps necessary to protect our patents from any company or party that seeks to profit from them without authorization,” Williams said in a statement. “Lots of thought, time and engineering went into our designs.”

Cablz, a Birmingham startup company, began in a garage in 2008 with the original Cablz retainer. In 2009 it won the “Best New Product” Award at ICAST, a national fishing tackle trade show.

Continuing to expand its line, Cablz introduced an adjustable model known as Cablz Zipz to the marketplace in 2012. Since then, Cablz has continued to expand its product line and has several other patent applications pending.

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