NEW YORK - February 2, 2015 - Vringo, Inc. (VRNG), a company engaged in the innovation, development and monetization of intellectual property, today issued an update on recent events in its litigations against ZTE.
On Friday, January 30th, the UK High Court rejected ZTE`s attempt to introduce new prior art and re-argue the validity of the UK part of Vringo`s European Patent 1,212,919 ("the `919 Patent") - a patent that the UK High Court previously found to be valid and infringed. The UK High Court ordered ZTE to pay Vringo`s costs in relation to this ruling and denied ZTE`s application for permission to appeal. The UK High Court will now turn to the issue of remedies for ZTE`s infringement of the `919 Patent. Over the coming months, the parties will also brief infringement and validity of four additional patents that have been asserted against ZTE in the UK.
In Romania, the Appeals Court recently upheld a preliminary injunction prohibiting ZTE from selling and importing 4G LTE handsets and equipment. The Appeals Court, following standard Romanian legal practice, required that Vringo post a €240 thousand bond to allow maintenance of the injunction. Vringo intends to post this bond to continue to enforce the injunction. With the injunction now in place, ZTE is legally prohibited from delivering 4G LTE handsets and equipment to retailers and carriers. ZTE previously stated that this injunction would result in a penalty of over €30 million as it relates to satisfying its contractual obligations.
Last week, ZTE filed a request that the Appeals Court reopen arguments on the preliminary injunction appeal to allow ZTE to argue that the amount of the bond should be increased to €40 million since that would be a more accurate reflection of the damages ZTE claims to be currently suffering. "Vringo understands that not only is ZTE`s request for a rehearing in Romania not allowed by the relevant statutes, but ZTE`s method of calculation of the bond is improper and contrary to law," said David Cohen, Vringo`s Chief Legal and Intellectual Property Officer.
In addition to Romania, through Vringo`s enforcement efforts, ZTE is also currently prohibited from selling certain products in Germany and Brazil.
In Germany, Vringo obtained a permanent injunction against ZTE, prohibiting ZTE from selling or importing 3G UMTS SDR Base Stations.
In Brazil, Vringo obtained an interim injunction (upheld after numerous appeals), prohibiting ZTE from selling and importing certain 3G UMTS or 4G LTE infrastructure equipment.
Vringo has further secured preliminary relief in Holland and India and looks forward to additional court and administrative proceedings in the coming months in Germany and France. "Despite the clear indication that ZTE has no respect for intellectual property rights, Vringo continues to offer a license to ZTE on FRAND terms. Vringo will continue to enforce its rights through courts world-wide in response to ZTE`s unwillingness to license Vringo`s patents," said Cohen.
"We are disappointed with ZTE`s tactics," Cohen continued. "Despite Vringo`s continued efforts to offer a license to its standard-essential patent portfolio on FRAND terms, ZTE continues to refuse to engage in good faith negotiations and struggles to find ways to delay reaching a resolution with Vringo. ZTE has even sought to press release every minor ruling in its favor including a small fee award (approx. $2,000) to be paid to ZTE in Malaysia."
The following list contains further information on the foregoing recent developments as well as additional actions.
- In the United Kingdom, on January 30, 2015, ZTE`s post-judgment application to re-open proceedings and introduce new prior art -following the Court`s earlier finding that ZTE infringes the UK part of the `919 Patent, and confirming the validity of the patent-in-suit-was rejected by the Court, following careful consideration of all arguments made by ZTE. The Court ordered ZTE to pay Vringo`s costs in relation to this post-judgment application, and denied ZTE`s application for permission to appeal.
- In Romania, on January 8, 2015, the Court rejected ZTE`s appeal of the interim injunction granted on July 1, 2015, prohibiting ZTE and its distributors from importing, exporting, introducing on the market, offering for sale, storing, selling, distributing, promoting, and/or conducting any other trading activity with respect to any 4G/LTE mobile phone produced by ZTE and any infrastructure equipment produced by ZTE which incorporates 4G/LTE technology. Concurrent with its rejection of ZTE`s appeal, the Court immediately reinstated the injunction. As part of its enforcement of the injunction, Vringo has provided notice to vendors of ZTE handsets and infrastructure equipment in Romania, informing the vendors that the Court has ordered them to cease all sales of ZTE 4G/LTE products in Romania. ZTE has previously stated that this injunction would result in losses of over €30 million to ZTE as a result of breaching its contracts with telecom providers Cosmote Romania and Deutsche Telekom AG. As a result of the Court`s reinstatement of the injunction, ZTE is legally forbidden from delivering equipment found by the Court to prima facie infringe the patent-in-suit to these providers. Vringo has provided notice of the injunction to both Cosmote Romania and Deutsche Telekom AG. Last week, however, ZTE filed a request that the Appeals Court reopen arguments on the preliminary injunction appeal to allow ZTE to argue that the amount of the bond should be increased to €40 million since that would be a more accurate reflection of the damages ZTE claims to be currently suffering.
- In Brazil, the injunction granted by the Court on April 15, 2014 against ZTE remains in force, having been unsuccessfully challenged by ZTE in six separate proceedings before both trial and appellate courts. As part of Vringo`s enforcement of the injunction, a Brazilian court marshal and court-appointed experts have seized ZTE equipment found by the Court to, prima facie, infringe Vringo`s Brazilian Patent 0,013,975, the equivalent of the `919 Patent, and Brazilian customs were ordered by court to detain any such equipment that ZTE attempts to import into Brazil.
- In Germany, on January 22, 2015, the Court found that ZTE does not infringe the German parts of two of Vringo`s European Patents. In the wake of that judgment, Vringo will explore all possible remedies including appeal. The Court did not rule on the validity of those patents, since, pursuant to German law, the question of validity of patents is dealt with in separate proceedings and before different courts. "While disappointing, these patents are unrelated to Vringo`s worldwide campaign to seek a license from ZTE on Vringo`s standard-essential telecom portfolio on fair, reasonable, and non-discriminatory terms," said David Cohen.
- In China, ZTE has filed petitions before the Patent Re-Examination Board of the State Intellectual Property Office of the People`s Republic of China for the re-examination of 33 of Vringo`s Chinese Patents. To date, eight patents have been held valid, and five have been held invalid. Vringo retains the right to appeal all determinations of invalidity. None of Vringo`s Chinese Patents are currently being asserted against ZTE.
- In the United States, the July 7, 2014 temporary restraining order against ZTE related to ZTE`s breach of the parties` NDA remains in effect pending a ruling on Vringo`s motion for a preliminary injunction.
About Vringo, Inc.
Vringo, Inc. is engaged in the innovation, development and monetization of intellectual property and mobile technologies. Vringo`s intellectual property portfolio consists of over 600 patents and patent applications covering telecom infrastructure, internet search, and mobile technologies. The patents and patent applications have been developed internally, and acquired from third parties. For more information, visit:www.vringo.com.
This press release includes forward-looking statements, which may be identified by words such as "believes," "expects," "anticipates," "estimates," "projects," "intends," "should," "seeks," "future," "continue," or the negative of such terms, or other comparable terminology. Forward-looking statements are statements that are not historical facts. Such forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties, which could cause actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking statements contained herein. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially include, but are not limited to: our inability to license and monetize our patents, including the outcome of the litigation against online search firms and other companies; our inability to monetize and recoup our investment with respect to patent assets that we acquire; our inability to develop and introduce new products and/or develop new intellectual property; new legislation, regulations or court rulings related to enforcing patents, that could harm our business and operating results; unexpected trends in the mobile phone and telecom infrastructure industries; our inability to raise additional capital to fund our combined operations and business plan; our inability to maintain the listing of our securities on a major securities exchange; the potential lack of market acceptance of our products; potential competition from other providers and products; our inability to retain key members of our management team; the future success of Infomedia and our ability to receive value from its stock; and other risks and uncertainties and other factors discussed from time to time in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC"), including our annual report on Form 10-K filed with the SEC on March 10, 2014. Vringo expressly disclaims any obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statements contained herein, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by law.
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Source: Vringo, Inc. via GlobeNewswire