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06-25-2013, 08:16 PM #1
Samsung Reportedly In Talks to Settle EU Antitrust Case
Facing an antitrust lawsuit from the European Union for allegedly abusing its ownership of standard-essential patents, Samsung has reportedly begun talks with regulars in hopes of settling the charges before the start of a trial. Citing two familiar who claim to be familiar with the matter, Reuters recently reported that preliminary settlement talks between both Samsung and the European Commission, which is the competition regulator for the EU, have already started. Among the companies who are alleged to be hurt by Samsungís actions is the rival smartphone maker, Apple.
Samsung was formally charged by the European Commission last December, being accused of abusing its dominant market position to gain a foothold in legal disputes waged against Apple. More specifically, Samsung was accused of misusing the standard-essential patents it owns as legal weapons to gain leverage in its ongoing patent infringement disputes against Apple. The South Korean manufacturer however has a duty to license standard-essential patents to rivals under fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory (FRAND) terms.
Apple has argued with Samsung about the company failing to meet its requirements as a standard-essential patent holder. The Cupertino California company accused Samsung of filing lawsuits seeking injunctions against Apple devices for the patents before making a licensing offer.
With EU regulators being prepared to go to court, Samsung is actively showing interest in settling according to a sourced quoted in the report. They added that itís too early to determine whether the current talks would actually result in a deal that would allow Samsung to avoid fines of as much as $17.3 billion. The U.S. Department of Justice is said to have also taken an interest in Samsungís lawsuits that involve standard-essential patents. The DOJ however has recently opened an investigation against Samsung and no antitrust suit has been filed.