The German SME Recht attended the 2018 Bernie Fit edition in Brazil, an annual trade fair where sporting goods and fitness are exhibited. Among other products, Recht presented a new Pilates reformer machine: the Zen model.
Although Recht had applied successfully for patent protection in Brazil for previous products in the past, it decided not to do so this time due to the extremely lengthy registration procedure which can last up to 10 years, and the low level of expected sales of this product.
Surprisingly, the Zen model became very popular and sold very well. At the start of 2019, one of Recht’s competitors, the Brazilian Company S&F, displayed a machine (the Corporão model) that embodied an identical system for which the Brazilian SME had filed a patent application.
The 2019 edition of the Bernie Fit fair was about to take place and the German company asked a local IP lawyer what they could do.