WASHINGTON, D.C. – A three-judge panel with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s Patent Trial and Appeal Board in Washington, D.C., has issued a complete victory for Houston-based oilfield products manufacturer G&H Diversified Manufacturing LP and the firm’s attorneys from Houston’s Alavi Anaipakos in what observers are calling a “bet-the-industry” lawsuit for oilfield equipment providers.
“We are extremely happy for our clients,” says Alavi Anaipakos co-founder Amir Alavi, lead trial counsel for G&H Diversified Manufacturing. “This judgment will protect all the manufacturers who build one of the key pieces of equipment used in today’s oil and gas drilling industry.”
The 139-page judgment issued on October 28, 2022, followed arguments presented before the PTAB by Alavi Anaipakos attorneys Joshua Wyde and Steve Jugle. Mr. Alavi and the firm’s Michael McBride played critical roles in each phase of the litigation.
G&H and several other oilfield equipment providers were sued in a series of patent infringement lawsuits in late December 2020 and early spring 2021. The lawsuits filed by Germany’s DynaEnergetics Europe GMBH accused G&H and others of infringing U.S. Patent No. 10,844,697 B2, which covers components in perforation guns that create openings in casings used in oil and gas well drilling.
The Alavi Anaipakos attorneys immediately pursued an aggressive strategy to end DynaEnergetics’ infringement campaign. In one of their first moves as lead counsel for G&H, the Alavi Anaipakos lawyers took the lead in defending the industry by petitioning the PTAB for a post-grant review of the contested patent before the district court litigation ever got off the ground.
The PTAB responded by instituting a review of the patent, and the Alavi Anaipakos team requested a stay on the underlying lawsuit pending the PTAB’s decision. In a rare move, the case was put on hold in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas even though the presiding judge said a few months earlier that he had granted similar stays only “one or two” times in his career.
In the PTAB judgment, the panel held that G&H “has proven, by a preponderance of the evidence, the unpatentability” of 21 different claims associated with the DynaEnergetics patent.