U.S. Philips Corporation Prevails in Decade-Long Patent Battle

U.S. Philips Corporation Prevails in Decade-Long Patent Battle


On August 30, WilmerHale client U.S. Philips Corporation won a substantial victory in a nearly decade-long battle to enforce its recordable/rewritable CD (CD-R/RW) patent rights. The victory came with the en banc U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, in Princo v. ITC, rejecting arguments that Philips’ licensing practices constituted patent misuse.

In a decision that will have broad-ranging implications for the patent misuse doctrine generally, the court (1) affirmed that patent misuse is a narrow doctrine applicable only to specific anticompetitive patentee conduct; and (2) recognized that an agreement between partners to a joint venture not to compete with the venture can have legitimate and pro-competitive purposes, and therefore can be condemned only upon proof of anticompetitive effects under the rule of reason.

Ed DuMont argued for Philips, with Bill Kolasky, Perry Lange and Sue-Yun Ahn on the briefs, as were former partners Doug Melamed and Jonathan Cedarbaum.

See below to read more about previous milestones in this case:

2008 Philips Prevails in Antitrust Litigation Over DVD-Player Patent Licenses

2007 ITC Decides in Favor of WilmerHale Client Philips Regarding Joint Licensing of CD-R/RW Technology Patents

2005 Major Patent Misuse/Antitrust Victory for Philips Electronics In Federal Circuit