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Ericsson settles patent dispute with Samsung

By Reuters

<p><body> <p>By Supantha Mukherjee</p> <p><span class="caps">STOCKHOLM</span> (Reuters) – Ericsson has reached a “multi-year” agreement on global patent licences with Samsung, the Swedish telecom equipment maker said on Friday, ending a dispute that hit its first-quarter revenue.</p> <p>Ericsson said it had not disclosed how many years the deal, which includes patents for all cellular technologies, would last. It said it now expects second-quarter patent licensing revenue to be 2 billion crowns ($237 million) to 2.5 billion crowns.</p> <p>The settlement, which ends ongoing lawsuits in several countries, was done in record time as patent disputes between technology companies can often take years to settle. </p> <p>The current dispute started in December, while the last tussle between the two companies was in 2012 and took two years to resolve.</p> <p>The cross-licence agreement covers sales of network infrastructure and handsets from Jan. 1, 2021, it said in a statement. The companies declined to disclose the terms citing confidentiality.</p> <p>Ericsson invests about 40 billion crowns every year in research and has a portfolio of more than 57,000 patents.</p> <p>Its Nordic rival Nokia, which also has a substantial patent portfolio, settled a patent issue with Samsung earlier this year. </p> <p>In the first quarter, Ericsson’s patent licensing revenue fell to 0.8 billion crowns from 2.5 billion crowns a year earlier. Royalties from its patent portfolio account for roughly a third of Ericsson’s operating profit.</p> <p>Ericsson said its patent revenue continue to be affected by factors such as expired licence agreements pending renewal, geopolitical impacts on the handset market, a technology shift from 4G to 5G, and possible currency effects going forward.</p> <p>It still has an ongoing dispute with Dutch telecom company <span class="caps">KPN</span> NV, which last month filed a patent-infringement complaint against Ericsson in a district court in Texas.</p> <p>($1 = 8.4280 Swedish crowns)</p> <p/> <p> (Reporting by Supantha Mukherjee, European Technology & Telecoms Correspondent, in Stockholm; Editing by Niklas Pollard and David Clarke)</p> </body></p>