Court affirms denial of Kana Energy Services injunction in trade case

By Gabriel Neves | Oct 17, 2018

HOUSTON – An energy company that filed a suit over allegations of breaching fiduciary duty and of misappropriating trade secrets lost an appeal that disputed the denial of an injunction.

Justice Tracy Christopher, on the bench of the Texas 14th District Court of Appeals, issued an 18-page ruling on Oct. 9, affirming the Harris County 190th District Court's decision in the lawsuit involving Jiangsu Jinshi Machinery Group, doing business as JMP Technologies; Helios Oil & Gas Equipment LLC; and Kana Energy Services Inc.

"Given the conflicting evidence, we cannot say that the trial court abused its discretion in denying the application. We accordingly affirm the trial court’s ruling," Christopher wrote.

Kana sued JMP and Helios over agreements regarding sales and distribution of oil field equipment that were made by JMP in China. The trial court denied Kana's application for temporary injunction and Kana appealed.

Kana claimed in the appeal that the lower court abused its discretion in denying the injunction that would have temporarily prevented JMP and Helios of developing new sales of equipment while Kana's claims of fraud, misappropriation of trade secrets, breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, breach of express warranty, breach of implied warranty of merchantability, and breach of implied warranty of fitness for a particular purpose were heard.

Kana and JMP started talks of forming a joint venture in 2013 in order for the first to become the latter's exclusive distributor in the U.S. After failing to reach an agreement, both companies were sued in 2014 by Wellhead Distributors International.

In 2016, Helios became JMP's distributor in the U.S. 

In her ruling, Christopher stated that "the trial court did not abuse its discretion in impliedly finding that Kana failed to satisfy its burden to (a) prove a cause of action for misappropriation of trade secrets, or (b) establish a probable right to relief," confirming that the appellant failed to show evidence of the claims.

Texas 14th District Court of Appeals case number 14-17-00863-CV

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