Cronos Technologies LLC v. Vitamin Shoppe Inc.
MEMORANDUM ORDER Denying 17 MOTION to Dismiss Based upon Defendant's Counterclaims filed by Cronos Technologies LLC, 11 MOTION to Dismiss for Failure to State a Claim filed by Vitamin Shoppe Inc. Signed by Judge Leonard P. Stark on 3/29/13. (ntl)
IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF DELAWARE
CRONOS TECHNOLOGIES, LLC,
C.A. No. 12-444-LPS
VITAMIN SHOPPE, INC.,
Presently before the Court are the following motions: (1) Defendant Vitamin Shoppe,
Inc.'s ("Defendant") motion to dismiss Plaintiffs Complaint for failure to state a claim (D.I. 11);
and (2) PlaintiffCronos Technologies, LLC's ("Plaintiff') motion to dismiss Defendant's
counterclaims for failure to state a claim (D.I. 17). For the reasons discussed below, the Court
will deny both motions.
Plaintiff filed this patent infringement action on April 9, 2012, alleging
infringement of U.S. Pat. No. 5,664,110 ("the '110 patent"). (D.I. 1) On July 27,2012,
Defendant moved to dismiss the Complaint for failure to state a claim. (D.I. 11) On August 13,
2012, Plaintiff filed an Amended Complaint. (D.I. 14) Defendant filed an Answer to the
Amended Complaint and Counterclaim on August 30, 2012, raising "failure to state a claim" as
an affirmative defense. (D.I. 16) On September 20, 2012, Plaintiff moved to dismiss
Defendant's counterclaims for failure to state a claim. (D.I. 17) Defendant filed an Amended
Answer and Counterclaim on October 9, 2012. (D.I. 19) Plaintiff filed an Answer to the
amended counterclaims on October 26, 2012. (D.I. 21) Plaintiffs Answer included "failure to
state a claim" as an affirmative defense.
Defendant contends that Plaintiff has failed to state a claim for: (1) direct
infringement; (2) contributory infringement; and (3) induced infringement. Defendant also seeks
to dismiss the Complaint to the extent it alleges infringement of a method claim because "a
single entity must perform all elements of a claim." (D.I. 12 at 12) To the extent Defendant's
motion (D.I. 11) is not moot as a result of the filing of the Amended Complaint, this motion is
denied. With respect to direct infringement, Plaintiffs Amended Complaint satisfies the
requirements of Form 18, which is all that is necessary. See McZeal v. Sprint Nextel Corp., 501
F.3d 1354, 1356-57 (Fed. Cir. 2007). With respect to contributory infringement, Plaintiffhas
removed this claim in the Amended Complaint. For induced infringement, Plaintiffs Amended
Complaint includes additional facts addressing knowledge, intent, and direct infringement.
Accepting the allegations in Plaintiffs Amended Complaint as true, and drawing all reasonable
inferences in Plaintiffs favor, the Court finds that Plaintiffhas adequately pled induced
infringement. As for Defendant's request to dismiss the Complaint with respect to the method
claims, this request is premature. The ' 110 patent includes both apparatus and method claims
and Plaintiff is not required to identify any specific asserted claim in the Amended Complaint. 1
Plaintiff contends that Defendant has failed to state a claim for: (1) declaratory
judgment of non-infringement; and (2) declaratory judgment of invalidity. To the extent
Plaintiffs motion (D.I. 17) is not moot as a result of the filing of the Amended Answer, this
motion is denied. For non-infringement, Defendant has amended its Answer to specifically
identify the non-infringing products. For invalidity, Defendant has amended its Answer to
include specific references to prior art, statutes, and legal principles.
See also Akamai Techs., Inc. v. Limelight Networks, Inc., 692 F.3d 1301, 1306 (Fed. Cir.
2012) ("[W]e hold that ... it is not necessary to prove that all the steps were committed by a
Accordingly, Defendant's motion to dismiss Plaintiffs Complaint (D.I. 11) is DENIED
and Plaintiffs motion to dismiss Defendant's counterclaims (D.I. 17) is DENIED.
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