Seoul Semiconductor Files Three New Patent Litigations and Announces Its Acrich Licensing Program

Seoul Semiconductor announced on March 8, 2018 that it has filed three new patent infringement lawsuits, together with its affiliate, Seoul Viosys Co., Ltd. (collectively “Seoul”), against a lighting company and distributors selling products that allegedly infringe Seoul's Acrich patents.

(Image: Seoul Semiconductor)

On March 2, Seoul filed a patent infringement lawsuit in the Texas Northern District federal court against Service Lighting Electrical Supplies, Inc. for infringement of 10 patents relating to Acrich technology. In the complaint, Service Lighting is accused of selling infringing LED bulbs in the course of operating America’s largest online retail channel for such bulbs:

On the same day, Seoul also filed a patent infringement lawsuit in Nevada District Court against Philcort T.V. & Electronic Leasing, Inc. for infringement of eight Acrich patents.

Seoul also filed a new patent infringement lawsuit in California’s Central District Court against Archipelago Lighting, Inc. for infringement of eight patents. Seoul had already filed a patent litigation last September against Archipelago, alleging infringement of 12 patents in the same California federal court. After filing the first litigation, Seoul became aware of additional products that it believes are infringing on other Acrich patents, which led Seoul to file a second patent litigation against the same company.

In this series of patent litigations relating to Acrich technology, Seoul focuses on various LED lamps, including LED filament bulbs, each of which is believed to infringe at least one or more of 20 different patents covering technologies for LED drivers for high-voltage operations, MJT (Multi-Junction Technology), filament LED bulb structures, LED packaging, LED epitaxial growth, LED chip fabrication, etc.

Acrich technology is essential for products that feature high-voltage operation with a high power output yet which rely on only a small number of LED units. In general lighting products, such as streetlights or filament LEDs, Acrich technology has become increasingly popular as demand increases for LED products capable of more than 12V power. Acrich technology is also increasingly used for high-end televisions with UHD (Ultra High Definition) displays because the Acrich technology makes it easy to implement local dimming functions.

Yong-Tae Lee, General Counsel and Executive Vice President, said: “Seoul will continue to enforce its IP against lighting and electrical companies, as well as their retailers, who manufacture or sell infringing products. But for those companies who wish to conduct business fairly and without infringing Seoul’s IP, we will soon be announcing a patent licensing program for Acrich technology. The new licensing program will offer reasonable terms to companies that wish to offer products incorporating Acrich technology essential for LED drivers, packages for high voltage operations, and AC operation LED drivers.”

He added: “We will do our best to encourage a fair-competition environment, in which young entrepreneurs and small entities can succeed in the business world, relying on fair competition in the market and respecting hard-earned patented technology. The end result will be that consumers can enjoy the benefits of Seoul’s research and investment in technology innovation.”

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