Big Win For IBM’s IP Licensing Business

By on August 3, 2018

August 3, 2018

IBM, holder of more than 45,000 patents, pioneered the business of aggressively pursuing lawsuits against alleged infringers. Last year its litigation function brought in $1.19 billion for the company, and things are going well this year too. On July 27 a jury awarded IBM $82.5 million after finding that Groupon infringed four of its e-commerce patents. IBM sued Groupon for $167 million, and it took a jury less than a day of deliberations to find that the defendant built its online coupon business by using IBM e-commerce inventions without permission. Two patents at issue came out of IBM’s Prodigy service, which started in the late 1980s and predated the web. During the two week trial, IBM argued that companies have paid from $20 million to $50 million for licenses to use its patents, among them Amazon, Google, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn Corp. “IBM invests nearly $6 billion annually in research and development, producing innovations for society,” said an IBM spokesman. “We rely on our patents to protect our innovations.” Groupon is considering post-trial motions and an appeal.
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Chicago Tribune

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