By Chika Nwabueze
A Federal High Court sitting in Umuahia, Abia State has granted an injunction restraining Chima Nsudum (Petitioner/respondent) from the use of his company Panadave Investment Limited or Jubis Ltd to import or sell any Davebenlin registered products, or pass-off the latter’s brand or its Sandpaper product by the name KMCA Abrasives.
The injunction was made sequel upon the Motion on Notice dated May 14, 2019 brought before the court by the Respondents in suit No FHC/UM/PET/02/18 between Chima Nsudum, Petitioner and Davebenlin Nigeria Ltd, Respondent.
Davebenlin Ltd through its Directors have sought for an injunction restraining the petitioner/respondent either by himself or from the use of his company Panadave Investment Ltd, Jubis Investment Ltd or any other company whatsoever, to import, distribute and sell in the Nigerian market any Davebenlin registered brand or pass-off Davebenlin brand or its sandpaper product by the name KMCA Abrasives produced by Kwang Myung Abrasives South Korea.
Also the respondents sought for Anton piller order against the petitioner/respondent to surrender for inspection by the applicant all transaction records, invoices, vouchers, proforma invoice, bill of lading of KMCA Abrasives sandpaper.
Another relief sought by Davebenlin Directors against Chima Nsudum and his companies is an order of the court directing the court bailiffs to confiscate, impound and retrieve all KMCA sandpaper in the market all over Nigeria and bring same to the custody of the court or in the alternative an order directing the new managers of the Applicant to enforce clause No. 7 of the interim agreement dated November 15, 2018.
The directors also asked for an order restraining the respondent, Chima Nsudum, from further breach of the sole agency agreement entered into by the Applicant and Kwang Myung Abrasives South Korea, himself being a signatory to the Agreement, or to use the business opportunities or trade secrets obtained by his position as the Director and Managing Director of the Applicants brand or infringe on her registered brand.
Davebenlin also asked for an order to account and render to the Applicant all proceeds realized by the importation, selling and distribution of the KMCA Abrasives Sandpaper in Nigeria.
However, while delivering judgement on the application Monday, September 30, the presiding judge, Hon. Justice D. E Osiagor granted Reliefs one and five, while he refused Reliefs 2, 3, 4 and 6. He ruled that the petitioner/respondent is “hereby restrained from further breach of the sole agency agreement entered into by the applicant and Kwang Myung Abrasives South Korea or to use the business opportunities or trade secrets of Davebenlin or infringe on her registered brand.
The judge also ruled that Chima Nsudum, who is the petitioner/respondent is hereby restrained either by himself or through the use of his company from importing and selling in our local market in Nigeria any Davebenlin registered brand or pass-off Davebenlin brand or its sandpaper product by the name KMCA Abrasives.
Davebenlin Ltd has its corporate offices in Lagos and Aba and has been dealing in abrasives until the demise of the founder of the company, and the move by Chima, who is the third son of the founder to take advantage of his former position as the MD to import the company’s brand and also another brand called KNCA abrasives without the knowledge of the board of directors. In a bid to continue with his business activities, the former MD filed a petition to wind up Davebenlin Ltd, this the respondents said is to enable him take over the trading name and brand and package of the company.
The court adjourned till November 4, for hearing on the substantive suit.