Nichia LED patent ruled invalid in Korea

July 29, 2008
In a company press release, Seoul Semiconductor says it has scored a victory against Nichia following a patent ruling in Korea.
Seoul Semiconductor Co. Ltd. is claiming a victory against rival Japanese LED maker Nichia Corporation in a patent invalidation proceeding filed with the Korean Intellectual Property Tribunal (KIPT).

On July 23, 2008, KIPT ruled that Nichia's Korea patent number 406201 has been invalidated for lack of novelty.

The patent in question has been asserted in an infringement lawsuit against certain of Seoul’s products. Based on the ruling, Seoul believes that it cannot infringe Nichia’s patent.

Seoul also contends that its technology is different from Nichia's now-invalidated patent. A counterpart of this patent has been asserted against Seoul by Nichia in the United Kingdom in May 2008.

With the ruling by KIPT, Seoul believes that the Nichia patent invalidation will have a very positive effect in the UK for Seoul and its business distributors such as Avnet EMG Ltd.

In the United States, the ITC (International Trade Commission) has granted Seoul's request for an investigation into possible patent infringement by Nichia. Seoul has initiated additional patent infringement actions against Nichia in the U.S. and other countries.