Biotech firm Amyris Inc. (NASDAQ: AMRS) is clapping back at allegations made by Lavvan Inc. that it committed patent infringment.
"Amyris is disappointed that LAVVAN has chosen the public domain to articulate its position," Amyris CEO John Melo said in a statement Friday. "We will pursue our legal rights to the fullest extent possible, including a vigorous defense against any assertions made by LAVVAN."
In an $881 million lawsuit, New York-based Lavvan detailed how a $300-million deal it had set up with Amyris back in March 2019 had gone sour.
Amyris would provide Lavvan with R&D resources to develop, test and produce biosynthetic cannabinoids. Lavvan, which agreed to make payments with each milestone it reached, claims Amyris missued its intellectual property and misappropriated trade secrets.
Lavvan filed the lawsuit in the Southern District of New York.
"LAVVAN owns exclusive rights to the intellectual property which Amyris is wrongfully using in connection with their development, testing and production of biosynthetic cannabinoids, including CBG," said Lavvan CEO Neil Closner in a prepared statement.
Amyris used Lavvan's tech for a competitive advantage, Closner alleges.
"Amyris has falsely claimed that our agreement permits them to engage in these activities, but it plainly does not. We are very disappointed that we have had to take this step, but through a history of erratic and egregious conduct, Amyris has demonstrated a willful intention to undermine the agreement. This has left LAVVAN with no choice but to vigorously pursue all legal avenues available to protect its rights."
Amyris, which operates in the health and beauty markets, has set up similar agreements with other companies.
"Over the years, we have achieved in excess of $650 million in proceeds from these partnerships," Melo said.
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