Last week, RT Media has reported on the U.S. Supreme Court’s decisions on Lexmark v Impression Products, ruling that patent rights are exhausted after first sale, wherever that sale takes place.
As one of the leading toner remanufacturers in China, Mito Color Imaging Co., Ltd wrote to RT media recently, expressing their excitement on hearing the decision.
Mary Ouyang (pictured), CEO of Mito commented: “I think the ruling of the U.S. Supreme Court is fair. It removes some unfair limitations that had been putting on the remanufacturing industry in the past. It is good news to the global remanufacturing industry. It also protects the rights of the customers.”
She further added: “With the ruling, the barriers of the first sale principle has collapsed. Empty cartridges can now be collected from a broader sources in a much more convenient way. The decision brings the argument that lasts 20 years to an end, leading the remanufacturing industry back to the right track of development. It will boost the development of remanufacturing in the future. It will also exert positive influence on environment in a long run, as well as provide more options to customers.”
However, every coin has two sides. Mary pointed out that the ruling also means a mixed blessing to the manufacturing industry. “The good side is that it will boost the development of the empty cartridge suppliers as they can purchase empty cartridges all over the world without fear of patent infringement. As remanufacturer, we can now focus more on production and pay more attention to quality control. On the other side, more competition will come into the market, while remanufacturing becomes easier and easier due to the exhaustion of the first sale principle. As a result, the price of remanufactured cartridges will decline, so will the prices of the new built cartridges. Of course, we don’t know how the OEMs will respond to this decision yet, neither [do we know] what action they will take in the future. Will they raise the bar with new chip technology so as to create bigger challenge for aftermarket? All these are big concerns now,” said Mary.