Oakland, California, USA –August 15, 2012 – The ReactorPanel Saddle Company, established in 1999 in the U.S. and in 2003 in the UK continues to thrive from its international base of operations in the US. Its former distributor for the UK, Saddle Exchange Ltd., has caused confusion in the market, however, by taking over the name and illegally appropriating the graphic identity of the ReactorPanel Saddle Company. Just yesterday, Saddle Exchange has conceded its improper use of the graphical identity – the round ReactorPanel “RP” logo created by ReactorPanel Saddle Company – and has removed it from the Saddle Exchange web site. It is important that UK customers are aware of the position as, among other things, Saddle Exchange is claiming to be the only authorized source of ReactorPanel saddles, which is simply not the fact.
In their attempts to pass themselves off as connected to the original ReactorPanel Saddle Company, even to the extent of copying the web colour scheme and using copyrighted photos and descriptions long after repeated notices to cease, Saddle Exchange has been causing confusion in the marketplace. Consumers should be aware that there are two entirely separate entities at present operating with the same name but with different products, different customer service practices and different warranty and repair policies.
The ReactorPanel saddle system was developed in the early 1990s by the Roe Richardson Co. Ltd. In 1999 Carmi Weininger formed a company to distribute ReactorPanel saddles in the U.S., and in 2000, she bought the assets of the Roe Richardson Company Ltd., including the intellectual property, after Roe Richardson ceased trading. A few years later, Weininger engaged Saddle Exchange Ltd. to act as her distributor for the UK.
In 2009, Weininger learned that the trade mark for “ReactorPanel” had not been properly transferred to ReactorPanel Saddle Company at the time she bought the business, and as a result, a saddle maker had been able to fraudulently purchase the mark. Weininger, with the assistance of Saddle Exchange, was able to successfully fight this purchase, and the trademark for “ReactorPanel” was removed from the saddle maker and temporarily made the property of the Crown. In winning this action, ReactorPanel Saddle Company was vindicated by the UK’s Intellectual Property Office.
Saddle Exchange, deeply in debt to the ReactorPanel Saddle Company, took advantage of this lapse in ownership to purchase the mark in an action which is presently being contested before the British Intellectual Property Office. In the meantime, Saddle Exchange have made statements on their web sites to make it appear as if they had been the continuous source of supply in the UK since Roe Richardson closed. They have begun to use the name of the original ReactorPanel Saddle Company as though it was their own. They have also successfully petitioned Facebook and youtube.com to prohibit the original ReactorPanel Saddle Company from having a presence in the UK, and they have made blatantly false statements that any source of supply of these saddles – other than themselves – is counterfeit.
ReactorPanel Saddle Company President Carmi Weininger states, “It was bad enough to have a trusted distributor go rogue and abuse our confidence by buying the trademark to our good name in the UK. But it was worse when that distributor forced youtube.com to prevent those in the UK from seeing our self-help videos which make the ReactorPanel system DIY. Instead, the English have no recourse for fitting but to call on the services of Saddle Exchange, though of course we continue to help those that contact us directly.”
The ReactorPanel Saddle Company manufacturers the user-adjustable ReactorPanel Saddle System and provides saddles and related products to customers worldwide, serving all the English riding disciplines from its headquarters in Oakland, California.
For further information contact The ReactorPanel Saddle Company Toll-Free: 888-771-4402 Fax: 510-698-6275 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org