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Mosaid sues Hynix

And settles with Samsung

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Memory technology company Mosaid has initiated legal proceedings against Hynix, alleging the South Korean DRAM maker has violated six of its US patents.

The move follows the settlement, announced earlier this week, of a three-year patent-infringement battled between Mosaid and Samsung.

The Canadian company's beef with Hynix centres on "fundamental" DRAM circuit designs, it said in a complaint filed with the US District Court for Eastern Texas, Tyler Division. Mosaid maintains the Hynix infringed the patents in the past and continues to do so with current DRAM products.

Earlier this week, Mosaid said it had reached a settlement with Samsung in which the South Korean giant will license its entire patent portfolio for a five-year period, along with a lifetime licence for four patent families filed before 2000.

How much Samsung is paying for all this intellectual property wasn't disclosed, but it will spread the cost over the five-year term of the licence.

There's a clue, however. Mosaid said the deal will contribute to $12.5m increase in the revenue it expects to announce for its current quarter. It now believes revenues will reach $16.5-17m, up from the previously forecast $4-4.5m. Earnings are expected to be $33.5-34m - before, Mosaid said it expects to lose $5-6m in the quarter.

Mosaid sued Samsung in September 2001, claiming the South Korean company's DRAM products infringed seven of its patents. Later, it sued Infineon, alleging similar infringement. The deal with Samsung doesn't directly affect the actions against Infineon and Hynix, but Mosaid will clearly hope that this latest licensing arrangement will persuade the two DRAM makers to settle out of court. ®

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Samsung founds $100m antitrust fines fund
WTO backs Hynix over US DRAM duties
Sony, Samsung agree to share toys
Samsung maps huge chip biz expansion
Toshiba takes Hynix to task in patent clash

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