One of BritainÂs leading nanotechnology companies is in a legal battle over one of its key products.
Oxonica, a technology company listed on the Alternative Investment Market (AIM), makes Envirox, aÂ product designed to boost the efficiency of diesel fuel. Envirox is used in the fleet of busesÂ operated by Stagecoach, the British national bus company, which also owns two million shares inÂ Oxonica. The nanotechnology company is also backed by Richard Farleigh, the Australian businessman
and star of BBC2Âs DragonÂs Den.
It has emerged that Envirox is at the centre of a legal dispute between Oxonica and Neuftec, aÂ company based in the Dominican Republic that claims to have invented the fuel additive. OxonicaÂ has filed a patents suit in LondonÂs High Court to protect itself against the claims. Neuftec hasÂ said that it will fight the suit and believes that the British firm is using its technologyÂ unlawfully. Kevin Matthews, the chief executive of Oxonica, said that the dispute with Neuftec wasÂ minor. ÂIntellectual property disputes like this are commonplace in nanotechnology,Â he said. ButÂ he urged Neuftec to come to the negotiating table. Ronen Hazarika, the founder of Neuftec, saidÂ that any settlement would have to be substantial.