Honesty is the best policy when it comes to developing a blooming start-up. You can’t cut corners just to get your product out on the market and you definitely can’t steal intellectual property to make your e-commerce software run smoother than a Lamborghini. This was, allegedly, the mistake London start-up Yieldify made.
Yieldify was founded four years ago with the intent of building e-commerce software that helps online retailers convince people to purchase products. The programme then tracks their behaviour and provides further retail prompts where necessary, Business Insider reports.
However, Bounce Exchange, a New York start-up with a similar model, have filed a second law-suit against the London company for launching a product with almost identical code. This, apparently, fell into the London company’s hands after Bounce Exchange executives gave the Yieldify boys a demonstration of their product back in 2013.
Bounce are gunning for the Yieldify and their £8 million venture capital investment. As you can see below (if you understand anything about code) the suit alleges that Yieldify: “copied hundreds of lines of code and generally replicated the overall structure, sequence, and organisation of the Bounce Exchange Software”.
In essence, these two sets of codes have the exact same function, we’re lead to believe. Yieldify’s lawyers came back to the allegations saying that the 2013 meeting did not provide any confidential information and any similarities are purely coincidental.
So what now? Well, Bounce are trying to rally Yieldify’s customers as defendants in order to gain “leverage” for the prosecution, says the London start-up’s lawyers.
There’s a load of legal mumbo jumbo to work through and if you want to learn more about the nit-picky details you can check out both sides of the story, here. So what’s the moral of the story? Don’t steal code would be the headline.
Intellectual property is a difficult mire to navigate, sometimes it’s unavoidable but if you do your research and work through the correct patent protocols you can avoid what Yieldify are going through right now – the transformation of a thriving start-up into a flaming wreck.