NEW YORK -- U.S.A. Vendicab Corp. is suing a competitor for unauthorized use of its taxicab vending machine technology and stealing its trade secrets. The backseat drink dispenser offers passengers a choice of five different cold drinks for 99¢ with the swipe of a credit or debit card.
U.S.A. Vendicab Corp. and Yellow Cab SLS Jet Management filed a lawsuit on Oct. 28 in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York against Vehicle Vending Systems LLC, Daniel Dao and Jack G. Schwartz, a New York resident, who owns Fortune Vending Inc.
The suit charges the defendants violated U.S.A. Vendicab's nondisclosure agreements, infringed trademarks, attempted to reveal trade secrets and otherwise committed unfair competition under federal and state fair trade practices law. The plaintiffs are seeking compensatory and punitive damages.
The vending machine, reportedly in development since 2007, was the idea of then 14-year-old Shaun Garber, whose father; Simon Garber is one of New York City's largest individual taxi owners and operators.
"Initially, I thought it was impossible but he kept after me until I found patent attorneys and the necessary technical experts to make it happen," recalled Simon Garber.
Garber unveiled the taxi beverage vender in March at the headquarters of the New Orleans Carriage Cab, where Garber announced plans to bring the vending machines to New York, Chicago and other U.S. cities. | READ MORE
Simon founded and owns U.S.A. Vendicab Corp. and Yellow Cab SLSJET Management, and also manages fleets in Chicago and New Orleans. In 2008, Garber was named Large Fleet Operator of the Year by the Taxicab, Limousine and Paratransit Association.