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Safeway sued over fuel rewards program


IRVING, Texas Excentus has filed a lawsuit against Safeway and Safeway subsidiaries, including Blackhawk Network, Blackhawk Marketing and Randalls/Tom Thumb alleging that Safeway used patented information to develop its fuel rewards program.

According to Excentus, during 2006 and 2007, Safeway, through its Blackhawk subsidiaries, attempted to acquire Excentus as well as the patents owned by Auto-Gas Systems (which are now owned by Excentus). Excentus claims that after Blackhawk failed to complete a transaction with either party, Safeway wrongfully used the patents, trade secrets and confidential information belonging to Excentus to develop its fuel rewards program called PowerPump Rewards. Excentus’ complaint also asserts that Safeway’s PowerPump Rewards program is a willful and deliberate infringement of four patents owned by Excentus.

“We believe our patent-protected fuelperks! rewards program is the most powerful customer loyalty program ever offered in the United States,” said Dickson Perry, president and CEO of Excentus. “We have made significant investments over the last ten years to develop our world-class technology, services and expertise and acquire the related trademarks and patents, all of which are valuable components of the fuelperks! program and assets of our company. When faced with situations like this one with Safeway, we are prepared to take the necessary steps to assure our assets and interests are protected.”

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