Thu, Dec 31, 2009 - Page 11 News List

Richtek files suit against five firms in patent dispute

By Kevin Chen  /  STAFF REPORTER

Richtek Technology Corp (立錡), a leading analog IC designer in Taiwan, yesterday said it had filed patent infringement lawsuits with the US International Trade Commission against five companies — including Advanced Micro Devices Inc (AMD), the world’s No. 2 maker of microprocessors after Intel Corp.

In a statement to the Taiwan Stock Exchange, the Hsinchu-based chip designer alleged that AMD, Sapphire Technology Ltd (藍寶科技) in Hong Kong, US firms Diamond Multimedia Inc and XFX Technology Inc and Taiwan’s uPI Semiconductor Corp (力智電子) infringed on three of its patents.

Richtek also alleged the companies used its business secrets “inappropriately,” according to the statement.

The firm, established in 1998 with capital of NT$5 million (US$155,000), focused on PC voltage control and analog IC products in its early years. Recently, however, it has expanded to become a supplier of power-management solutions for various consumer electronics products, such as digital still cameras, liquid-crystal displays and mobile handsets.

The company’s expansion into notebook peripherals has helped it secure market share from peers in Taiwan and the US in the last two quarters, Citigroup analyst Timothy Lam (林子謙) said.

Ricktek said the commission informed it on Tuesday that it had begun conducting an investigation into the matter. The company had previously filed a similar lawsuit against the companies in district court in northern California, asking for an injunction and compensation, it said.

Ricktek did not disclose the amount it hoped to receive.

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