Lululemon is counter-suing Peloton as the brands battle over athleisure design patents

Lululemon store with mannequins wearing athleisure
  • Lululemon is counter-suing Peloton, claiming Peloton infringed on several of its design patents. 
  • Lululemon is seeking an injunction to stop Peloton from selling those products, plus damages.
  • The suit follows a lawsuit filed by Peloton on November 24 seeking to invalidate the patents.

Lululemon is counter-suing Peloton as the feud between the two fitness brands intensifies. 

Lululemon filed suit in Central California federal court on Monday, alleging that several of the products from Peloton’s new apparel line infringe on Lululemon’s design patents.

The suit alleges that Peloton produced “knock-offs” of six of its design patents and created a “confusingly similar” imitation of Lululemon’s ubiquitous Align leggings, infringing on the leggings’ “trade dress,” a broad trademark law that extends to the look and feel of a garment. 

Lululemon is seeking an injunction against Peloton to stop it from selling the products Lululemon claims are “copy-cats” of its patents, as well as damages from Peloton to make up for any lost profits Lululemon has experienced as a result of Peloton’s products hitting the market.

Shannon Higginson, Lululemon’s senior vice president, general counsel, and chief compliance officer, told Insider in a statement that the Canada-based athleisure brand is “confident in our position and look forward to properly resolving this case through the courts.” 

A spokesperson for Peloton did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment. 

Lululemon’s suit follows a legal filing from Peloton on November 24 asking a Manhattan federal court to declare that Peloton has not infringed on Lululemon’s patents, and to find that several of Lululemon’s patents are invalid and unenforceable.

Peloton filed its suit after receiving a cease-and-desist letter from Lululemon in early November — a copy of which was viewed by Insider — demanding that Peloton stop selling those items immediately and hand over all of the information it has obtained about Lululemon’s products. Lululemon threatened legal action if Peloton refused to comply. 

In the suit filed Monday, Lululemon alleged that Peloton immediately wrote back asking for time to respond to Lululemon’s demands, but instead “used the delay to secretly prepare its own complaint and preempt the lawsuit that Lululemon had so clearly threatened in its letter,” the suit claims. 

Peloton officially launched its own private-label clothing line in September, an array of Peloton-branded clothing and accessories made in-house. Prior to launching the line, Peloton had a co-branding deal with Lululemon which was terminated earlier this year. 

While Peloton is primarily known for its $US2,500 ($AU3,504) connected exercise bike, apparel has increasingly become a bigger part of the company’s business. CEO John Foley said in October that the company had sold 600,000 branded apparel items that quarter alone, Business of Fashion reported.