Japanese LED maker Nichia Corporation and German firm Osram GmbH entered into patent cross-license agreements in 2002 and then again 2010. With these IP cross-license agreements, both companies can use each other’s patents licensed under the respective agreement in its own nitride-based semiconductor products including white, blue, and green LED and laser components.
Aldo Kamper, CEO of Osram Opto Semiconductors (Osram’s LED making business) and Hiroyoshi Ogawa, President of Nichia Corporation met at the Light+Building in Frankfurt, Germany, and expressed their desire to expand and strengthen the IP cross-license co-operation between the companies.
Hiroyoshi Ogawa and Aldo Kamper share the belief that much has happened in this industry since the companies approved the last cross-license agreement in 2010. Aldo Kamper said, “To further advance LED and laser technology, Nichia and OSRAM have spent, in total, more than 2.5 billion Euros in research and development since 2011.”
Osram and Nichia to Negotiate New IP Cross-License
The two companies now agree to enter into negotiation for an IP cross-license incorporating about 7000 new patent applications including approximately 2000 granted patents from Nichia and Osram (all figures are worldwide figures). These worldwide patents relate to General Lighting, Automotive, LCD backlights, Display, Medical, and Industrial applications as well as a full range of optoelectronics products.
“On all levels of the value chain from semiconductor epitaxy to phosphor material, and packaging, and further downstream technologies, significant progress has been made in the past eight years and protected by a variety of new patents on both sides,” said Hiroyoshi Ogawa. “In order to capture their technological achievements in all existing as well as emerging application areas for optoelectronics products and technologies, Nichia and Osram will discuss a cross-license that will cover the many additional patents based on Post-2010 inventions.”
Aldo Kamper added, “I fully share this view. As a consequence, our companies will be able to leverage each other’s technological advancements, while both companies’ customers will benefit from an industry-leading protection in IP related matters.”