A statement written by Tanknology director Noel Kennedy on the Leighton O’Brien legal action:
Firstly, it must be absolutely clear that Tanknology does not utilise Leighton O’Brien’s (LOB) patented process, or anything vaguely similar, as a means of “cleaning” fuel tanks internal shells. It simply doesn’t work in our opinion.
Tanknology have been unequivocal in advising clients that we do not believe the method LOB promotes, and has somehow patented, is remotely effective in cleaning the internal shell of a fuel tank and we have demonstrated this through video evidence in the past. It does, however, have some application in the removal of contaminants already settled out of, or held in suspension in fuel.
We believe the LOB patented “Tank and Fuel Treatment” process is merely a replica of numerous fuel polishing methods that have been available in Australia and the rest of the world for many decades and the fact that it was granted a patent in 2008 seems frankly laughable and highly contestable. The LOB process is not rocket science and certainly is not of their invention in our opinion.
Secondly, Tanknology find Reed Leighton’s precipitative action in lodging court proceedings while still in the midst of constructive commercial negotiations through their designated executive Jeff Davis, President of LOB USA and Tanknology’s Australasian Chief Executive somewhat disingenuous. Some might construe this legal tactic as premature, excessive and even stand-overish. Discussions were still very much alive despite Mr Leighton’s assertion to the contrary.
If this court proceeding were to lead to LOB’s achieving their desired monopoly over water and contaminant extraction from fuel tanks in Australia that would be a travesty to the many dozens of small and larger contractors who have been performing such services since well before LOB were in existence. It would also be a travesty to the many thousands of fuel tank owners across Australia who will be left with no choice of service provider in future and may well pay the price.
In the meantime Tanknology will proceed to leverage the support of its clients and existing service providers in the market to overcome any self-seeking challenge to freedom of choice in the fuel market.
In terms of Tank Cleaning, Tanknology is pursuing far more effective strategies which have no patent implications and which actually work and can be demonstrated to do so.
Noel Kennedy – Director
Tanknology Pty Ltd