Sat, Dec 03, 2011 - Page 11 News List

Everlight files lawsuit against Japanese rival Nichia

Staff Writer, with CNA

Everlight Electronics Co (億光電子), a Taiwan-based LED product supplier, yesterday said it had filed a lawsuit in a district court in Tokyo, asking the court to ban Nichia Corp of Japan from making false allegations about patent infringement by the Taiwanese firm.

Everlight, which manufactures LED components and LED lighting, as well as offers testing and packaging services, said Nichia had accused it of infringing its patent and even threatened to sue Everlight’s dealers in Japan.

Everlight said Nichia’s repeated moves to spread false information that the Taiwanese firm had stolen its LED production-related technology was a violation of fair market competition.

To safeguard its rights, Everlight lodged a lawsuit at the Tokyo District Court demanding Nichia stop disseminating false information and seeking damages from the Japanese rival for the losses it caused.

However, Everlight declined to disclose the financial terms it demands in the litigation.

“Everlight is the first Taiwanese LED player that has filed suit against Nichia,” Primasia Investment Consultancy Co said in a client note yesterday. “As Nichia has become aggressive in the patent war due to rising competition in the lighting [field] in Japan, Everlight’s action may help bolster its plan to launch its own-brand light bulb there in early 2012.”

Since 2006, Everlight and Nichia have been locked in a patent battle after the Japanese company filed a civil lawsuit in Taipei, alleging that Everlight infringed its patent relating to LED component production and demanding NT$80 million (about US$2.65 million) in damages.

However, it lost the case last month after the Supreme Court found no merits in the Japanese firm’s allegation.

Taiwan’s Supreme Administrative Court in October upheld a ruling laid down by a High Administrative Court, saying the patent claimed by Nichia in the civil lawsuit was invalid.

Nichia recently also filed a lawsuit relating to LED light bulbs against Tsann Kuen Japan, a subsidiary of Tsann Kuen Enterprise Co (燦坤實業).

Additional reporting by Kevin Chen

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