After long legal battle, Micromax to take global patent licence from Ericsson

Indian-bred phone maker Micromax Informatics will take a global patent licence from Ericsson, according to a report in the Economic Times.

As per the agreement, Micromax will pay royalties to Ericsson on every phone it sells in Indian and global market that uses 2G or 3G technology.

The agreement came after several negotiations between the companies that had been engaged from five years in the Delhi High Court.

The court also ordered bank guarantees of worth more than Rs 82 crore to be released to Micromax and its subsidiary Yu Televentures, which had been submitted to the court in the beginning of the case. Release of guarantee of nearly Rs 7.8 crore to Ericsson has also been ordered.

Micromax has written to the Competition Commission of India (CCI), withdrawing its complaint against unfair practices used by Ericsson to obtain royalties, people aware of this development said.

“Learned counsel for the parties’ state that the parties have agreed to withdraw all their pending disputes between them including the present suit, counter-claims, contempt petitions as well as applications,” the Delhi HC judge was quoted as saying from the Economic Times.

Confirming the agreement, a spokesperson told ET, “Ericsson has over the years entered into multiple global license agreements for our standard essential patents, thereby spurring competition in the market. We are pleased to now count Micromax among them.”

However, it did not share the royalty on each phone sold that will be paid by Micromax.

What exactly was the dispute?

In March 2013, Ericsson sued Micromax for patent infringement. Then in 2016, the Delhi High Court recognised the authority of the regulator – the Competition Commission of India (CCI) to probe Ericsson for its allegedly anti-competitive conduct.

Ericsson alleged that Micromax’s mobile phones infringe its standard essential patents (SEPs) on mobile phone technologies, including 3G and EDGE.

Besides, Intex, had also moved the regulator along with Micromax. Both, Micromax and Intex have claimed that Ericsson’s royalty rates were excessive.

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