Overland sues BDT for patent infringement
No win, no fee law firm deal
There are two patents involved: one dealing with media elements in an automated media library; and the other with insertion or removal of tape cartridges through a slot without interrupting library operations.
BDT supplies its products on an OEM basis. Its FlexStor II tape autoloader product line is singled out as using the patent technology at issue.
The suit has been filed in southern California and identifies two BDT companies in Germany and BDT Products inc. based in Irvine, California. Overland wants fair royalties for systems shipped and cessation of the use by BDT of its patented IP in the USA.
Eric Kelly, Overland's President and CEO, said: "We owe it to our shareholders and our customers to protect the technology investments we have made throughout the years."
The company is using DLA Piper LLP, a law firm with offices in Palo Alto and San Diego, in what looks like a "no win, no fee" arrangement. Kelly said: "Of significant interest to our shareholders, the arrangement with DLA Piper ensures that this legal action will not involve any cash outlay for Overland Storage, and therefore maximises the return to our company and its investors."
DLA Piper has represented Sun Microsystems, in its dispute with NetApp over ZFS, and also Samsung, Rambus and Motorola. It describes itself as a second tier law firm in hi-tech electronics and IT patent litigation.
We know Overland has to husband every dollar it can as it struggles to recover from severely depressed results, but a "no win, no fee" arrangement in patent infringement law suits in the storage industry seems a trifle surprising. ®
Overland sues... itself?
Doh. What the article fails to mention is that Overland - who rely on the dregs of their tape revenue to keep financing Kelly's Snap fantasies - are themselves a BDT OEM! After they abandoned the disastrous ArcVault loader line they instead released the 'Neo S' series, hoping to capitalize on the Neo brand that was built back when Overland still had an engineering team (long since laid off).
Just for instance, spot the differences, if any:
... and there are many more OEMs of the same products, all sourced from BDT.
(side note - for extra credit spot the irony at http://h10010.www1.hp.com/wwpc/us/en/sm/WF04a/12169-304612-304622-304622-304622.html?jumpid=re_R295_prodexp/busproducts/computing-storage/business-class-libraries&psn=storage)
Big fan Chris, but why not dig a little deeper - the rise and fall of ArcVault (something to do with a big OEM deal a few years ago that never closed), the upstart BDT that holds the commodity tape library high ground (oops ADIC, go get em Quantum), and now Overland's own attempt to sue their own supplier? Why not sue HP too and just get it over with...