VFTD would like to congratulate the ProPaintball guys on their merger talk meeting story. Nice job. Because it was indeed a secret meeting despite the fact VFTD aluded to the fact it was happening a couple of weeks ago. Which reminds me: Almost any time some sort of sensitive info leaks into the public this site is assumed to be involved. Au contraire. If VFTD burned sources and/or broke promises Mr. Curious would quickly be out of business. And to prove it to y'all I'ma tell you something about the meeting you don't know.
WHAT'S HE GONNA SAY!?! OMG!
Rumor has it that everyone involved signed a non-disclosure up front and if that is true then whoever passed information on to ProPaintball should oughta be mighty red-faced right about now assuming the details published by ProPaintball are accurate--something VFTD can neither confirm or deny. Next time some beans get spilled y'all might want to look a little closer to home.
As sensitive as the secret meeting was Mr. Curious has stumbled onto a rumor buried so deep in the industry's basement it was surely intended to never see the light of day. Assuming it's accurate. It is, in fact, so sensitive that VFTD isn't going to identify the company--but those of you not hopelessly out of the loop should know who is being referenced--and further no mention will be made of specific numbers.
Remember back in the day when Smart Parts was involved in one litigation after another mostly revolving around their ability to enforce certain patents? And the upshot was some sort of cross deal was made between SP & Dye & Angel (more or less) and everybody else ended up having to come to terms with SP and pay licensing fees in order to manufacture and sell electronic paintball markers. Or get out of the gun biz. Do you remember what happened to those patents? And do you remember a press release made regarding those patents?
Rumor has it that some gun makers have been approached and informed they will be required to pay a lump sum upfront plus a per gun licensing fee that is approx. 40% - 50% greater than SP ever demanded. (Inflation, I guess.) While the company is perfectly within its legal right to do so that would appear to contradict past public statements of intent. VFTD does not know how or if this rumor may affect any company that had agreed to terms previously with SP. In looking for additional and related info it seems that the duration of active patent protection (in this category) is twenty years which leaves a goodly number of years that the patents will remain in force--assuming annual maintenance fees are kept up to date.