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Man Bites Dog? Patent Suit Filed by Chinese Company Against U.S. Companies

In a symbolic moment for China’s economy, a Chinese manufacturer has filed a patent infringement suit against major U.S. retailers including Best Buy (BBY), Wal-Mart (WMT), Target (TGT) and Staples (SPLS).

Changzhou Asian Endergonic Electronic Technology Co. filed a lawsuit against numerous U.S. retailers, including Best Buy Co. [[BBY]], Wal-Mart Stores Inc. [[WMT]], Target Corp. [[TGT]], and Staples Inc. [[SPLS]] alleging infringement on its patented design on dashboard mounts for GPS units.

Changzhou claims that the retailers are selling products made by a competitor that violate its intellectual property rights. The company is also suing the Chinese manufacturer of the product that the U.S. retailers are stocking.

The case, the firt of its kind where a Chinese company has filed a suit in U.S. court over a patent developed in China, may mark a whatershed moment for China’s place on the international economic stage. Long recongized and the world’s most important up-and-coming player, China has still been seen only as a limited force in business: offering incredibly cheap manufacturing and a burgeoning consumer class to sell to but little else.

This suit may turn attention to the innovation happening in China while also spurring more of it.

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