Calgary firm sues Corridor over data use by Bruce Erskine, October 16, 2013, The Chronicle Herald
Corridor Resources Inc. of Halifax is being sued for more than $1.73 million for allegedly using a Calgary company’s intellectual property without paying for it. Geophysical Service Inc. alleged in documents filed recently in the Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta that Corridor breached a 2003 licensing agreement between the two firms by acquiring prorietary seismic data compiled for government regulatory bodies without authorization or payment. The plaintiff valued the data at $680,960.01, based on GSI’s licensing fee rates, according to court documents filed in Calgary.
GSI also alleged that Corridor used the data to receive $1,052,520 in allowable expenditure credits from the Canada-Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Board, despite a prohibition allegedly included in the 2003 agreement. “Corridor caused and is thus liable to GSI for damages as a result of the Corridor agreement breaches in the amount of $1,733,480.91 or more, to be determined at trial,” the plaintiff alleged in court documents. GSI is also seeking an injunction restraining Corridor from infringing on its intellectual property rights, an order that it return all copies of the data in its possession, damages and interest. None of the allegations have been proven in court.
Corridor has an operating natural gas field in New Brunswick and offshore exploration holdings in the Gulf of St. Lawrence. GSI filed a similar, $13-million action against Hunt Oil Co. of Canada Inc. in Nova Scotia Supreme Court last week. Earlier this year, Geophysical applied to Nova Scotia Supreme Court for an order declaring unlawful the Canada-Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Board’s demand that the company provide it with all records of non-exclusive seismic survey work it has done off Nova Scotia. It has also asked the court for a permanent injunction preventing the board “from disclosing or otherwise making available to any person whatsoever, and in any manner or format whatsoever, the complete records, or alternatively the electronic records.” Geophysical claims the data is proprietary, confidential and copyrighted, and constitutes trade secrets. The company alleges that the board has distributed its seismic data in an attempt to attract businesses to the East Coast. The Nova Scotia court will consider in a Nov. 26 hearing whether board regulations are valid and consistent with governing legislation. [Emphasis added]