Saturday, February 24, 2018

ASM International announces response to Hitachi Kokusai´s counterclaim

ASM International N.V. (Euronext Amsterdam: ASM) today responds to press reports of a patent infringement suit against ASM filed by Hitachi Kokusai in Federal District Court for the District of Oregon on February 20, 2018. The claim follows an earlier suit for patent infringement filed by ASM against Hitachi Kokusai and ASM's earlier initiation of an arbitration against Hitachi Kokusai alleging breach of a license agreement between the parties. ASM will diligently prosecute its cases against Hitachi Kokusai and will vigorously defend against Hitachi Kokusai's claims, which, ASM believes lack merit.

In 2007, ASM and Hitachi Kokusai entered into a licensing agreement, according to which ASM granted usage of its ALD patents in the field of use of batch ALD to Hitachi Kokusai.

On August 30, 2017, ASM initiated an arbitration with the American Arbitration Association against Hitachi Kokusai for breach of the license agreement between the parties. It is not yet known when the arbitration will be completed. 

Following the expiration of the parties' patent license agreement, ASM filed, on December 1, 2017, a suit for patent infringement against Hitachi Kokusai and its U.S. subsidiary in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. ASM asserted three patents. ASM has requested both an injunction and monetary damages.

Subsequently, Hitachi Kokusai filed suit for alleged patent infringement against ASM in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. Hitachi Kokusai asserted seven patents. Hitachi Kokusai also requested an injunction and monetary damages, but no specific monetary amount has been requested to date. ASM denies Hitachi Kokusai's allegations in the Northern District of California action, which allegations were recently amended in response to a motion to dismiss filed by ASM.

Thereafter, on February 20, 2018, Hitachi Kokusai initiated litigation in the District of Oregon asserting four patents against ASM. ASM is evaluating the allegations in the Oregon action, which initially appear to be largely duplicative of the earlier filed allegations in the Northern California action. ASM's response to the Oregon complaint is not yet due, but ASM will vigorously defend against each of Hitachi Kokusai's claims.

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