OSRAM and Citizen end their patent disputes

2007/07/18

OSRAM grants Citizen a license for white LEDs

18.07.2007 | Trade Press

OSRAM GmbH and its subsidiary Opto Semiconductors, signed with Citizen Electronics Co. Ltd. of Japan, one of the leading manufacturers of electronic components, an extensive license agreement. The agreement covers the use of OSRAM intellectual property developments in white LED products of Citizen Electronics, a subsidiary of the famous watchmaker Citizen. This license agreement also puts an end to the disputes between the two companies that has been running since 2005. The way is now open for closer cooperation.

With the license agreement signed today Citizen is granted the right against payment to use OSRAM intellectual property in white LEDs of all sizes, in all output categories and for all areas of application, for example in the automobile sector or for displays and keypads. Dr. Rüdiger Müller, CEO of OSRAM Opto Semiconductors and Gerd Pokorny, General Counsel of OSRAM GmbH said "We are pleased that this agreement signals the end of an dispute and that another renowned LED manufacturer in Citizen Electronics has recognized the importance of our intellectual property."

In 2005, OSRAM Opto Semiconductors filed a lawsuit against Citizen for violation of OSRAM´s intellectual property rights to white LEDs both in Germany and 2006 in the USA. The relevant intellectual property rights protect OSRAM`s invention by which white light is produced by converting blue light using a yellow converter. In addition to signing this license agreement, OSRAM and Citizen are also discussing the possibility of cooperation.

Thanks to its powers of innovation and its broad product range, OSRAM Opto Semiconductors has climbed to number two in the world on the market for LEDs. Just recently the company announced that it will be expanding its production sites in Penang/Malaysia and its main plant in Regensburg/Germany. Among other things, a new production line is currently being built in Penang for LED chips.