Original Source Press Release:
SanDisk, Viking conclude litigation!|
(Tuesday, October 30, 2001 - 15:27 EST)
Court rules flash sold to Viking by Lexar is covered by a previous agreement...
SanDisk Corp., Lexar Media Inc. and Viking Components Inc. have today distributed press releases announcing that the lawsuit between Lexar's customer Viking and SanDisk has concluded. As usually seems to be the case with press releases on court cases from SanDisk and Lexar, taken at face value they suggest that their respective companies emerge victorious - but the reality is somewhere in between. SanDisk notes that Viking have been enjoined "from selling in the United States CompactFlash cards ... that incorporate Lexar Media, Inc.'s 1140, 1145, 1175 and 1250 controllers". The company also notes that Viking has "provided an undisclosed payment to SanDisk as part of the settlement"...
Lexar meanwhile fill in the more of the jigsaw puzzle with their release, commenting that "the Court held that Lexar Media's sales of these old controllers to Viking prior to December 31, 2000 were covered by the Lexar Media/SanDisk settlement agreement that was executed on November 14, 2000". Lexar also states that from the beginning of 2001, the flash controllers it uses in its products (and which Viking resells) use a different technology which SanDisk "stipulated did not infringe [it's] patent".
Finally, Viking co-CEO Glenn McCusker tersely states that "[while] this has been a nuisance and a distraction, it has had no effect on our ability to support our customers' business."
So the final result? SanDisk apparently receives an "undisclosed" payment (presumably under the terms of the prior SanDisk/Lexar agreement). Viking's current flash sales meanwhile continue unaffected by the judgement, since the patent in question affects cards with a controller which is no longer used. There is really no result to the consumer, except perhaps for the fact that the fees for the lawyers must come from somewhere... ;)
The press releases from each company follow below, in the order which we received them...
|SANDISK CORPORATION successfully concludes patent case|
Viking Components Agrees To a Permanent Injunction In Favor of SanDisk;
SUNNYVALE, CA, Oct. 29, 2001 - SanDisk Corporation (NASDAQ:SNDK) announced today that it has settled its litigation with Viking Components, Inc., and obtained a permanent injunction enjoining Viking from selling in the United States CompactFlash cards manufactured by Viking that incorporate Lexar Media, Inc.'s 1140, 1145, 1175 and 1250 controllers.
On May 10, 2001, SanDisk filed a complaint in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California for infringement of SanDisk's United States Patent No. 5,602,987 by CompactFlash cards manufactured by Viking that contain Lexar Media's 1140, 1145, 1175 and 1250 controllers.
These controllers were found in Lexar Media's CompactFlash cards that were held by the same Court to infringe the '987 patent in a previous litigation between SanDisk and Lexar Media. Viking also provided an undisclosed payment to SanDisk as part of the settlement.
SanDisk Corporation, the world's largest supplier of flash data storage products, designs, manufactures and markets industry-standard, solid-state data, digital imaging and audio storage products using its patented, high density flash memory and controller technology. SanDisk is based in Sunnyvale, CA.
The matters discussed in this news release contain forward looking statements that are subject to certain risks and uncertainties as described under the caption, "Factors That May Affect Future Results" in the company's annual report on Form 10-K and quarterly reports on Form 10-Q, filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The companies assume no obligation to update the information in this release.
All trade names are either registered trademarks or trademarks of their respective holders.
SanDisk's web site/home page address: http://www.sandisk.com
|Court Grants Summary Judgment In Favor Of Lexar Media's Customer, Viking|
Case Settled After Court Rules That Lexar's Sales To Viking Are Covered By Lexar/SanDisk Settlement Agreement
FREMONT, Calif., October 29, 2001 -- Lexar Media, Inc. (Nasdaq: LEXR), a leading designer, developer and marketer of award-winning digital film and connectivity products for the digital photography market, announced today that the Federal District Court for the Northern District of California has granted summary judgment in favor of Lexar Media's customer, Viking Components, Inc.
"We were very pleased that the Federal Court ruled in favor of our customer, Viking," stated Eric Whitaker, Lexar Media's vice president of technology licensing. "This recent litigation between Viking and SanDisk involved Lexar Media's prior generation flash memory controllers. In granting summary judgment, the Court held that Lexar Media's sales of these old controllers to Viking prior to December 31, 2000 were covered by the Lexar Media/SanDisk settlement agreement that was executed on November 14, 2000."
"At the beginning of 2001, Lexar Media introduced a new series of controllers - not at issue in the Viking/SanDisk litigation - which were built on a new patent pending design that SanDisk stipulated did not infringe SanDisk's patent," continued Mr. Whitaker. "Our customers have migrated to this new controller design, which allows them to produce flash cards which are licensed to Lexar Media's patents and do not infringe SanDisk's flash card patents. We intend to continue to enforce our patents vigorously against other card manufacturers who infringe our technology."
About Lexar Media, Inc.
Lexar Media, Inc. is a leading designer, marketer and licensor of award-winning removable flash-based digital storage media, card readers and ATA controller solutions for the digital photography, consumer electronics, industrial and communications markets. Lexar Media brands digital memory cards in the industry's most popular formats including CompactFlash, SmartMedia, Memory Stick, MultiMediaCard and SD. A digital storage innovator, Lexar Media was the first to develop and advance proprietary read-write speed standards for its USB-enabled CompactFlash cards and holds over 35 memory and controller patents. Licensees of Lexar Media's technology include Olympus, SanDisk, Samsung Electronics and Sony. Headquartered in Fremont, California, Lexar Media also has offices in London and Tokyo. Lexar Media is a member of the Russell 2000 Index. For more information, please call 1-800-789-9418 or visit www.digitalfilm.com.
Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
This news release contains forward-looking information within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and is subject to the safe harbor created by those sections. These forward-looking statements include statements related to the scope and future value of our patent portfolio. These forward-looking statements involve a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated by these forward-looking statements. These risks include that we could become subject to additional intellectual property claims that could divert management's time and attention, could be time consuming and expensive to defend and could limit our access to important technology, and that if we are unable to adequately protect our intellectual property, our competitors may gain access to our technology which could harm our ability to successfully compete in our market. Readers should also refer to the risk factors described in Lexar Media's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its Annual Report on Form 10-K for its fiscal year ended December 31, 2000, filed with the Commission on April 2, 2001. Lexar Media assumes no obligation to update the forward-looking information contained in this news release.
Lexar Media, SayCheese.com, JumpShot and the Lexar Media logo are trademarks of Lexar Media, Inc. Lexar Media, Inc. is an authorized licensee of the CompactFlash trademark. All other brand or product names are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective holders.
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|Viking and SanDisk Settle Patent Infringement Lawsuit; Exceeds Year-On-Year Flash Sales by Over 300 Percent|
RANCHO SANTA MARGARITA, Calif. - October 30, 2001 - Viking Components, Inc., one of the world's largest manufacturers of OEM and upgrade component technology, has settled a patent infringement claim made by SanDisk® Corporation (NASDAQ: SNDK).
SanDisk sued Viking last March for patent infringement based on its use of Lexar's TidalWave flash memory controller. That suit, based upon old controller technology, has now been settled for a nominal amount. "While this has been a nuisance and a distraction," said Viking Co-CEO, Glenn McCusker, "it has had no effect on our ability to support our customers' business."
Earlier this year Viking and Lexar entered into a strategic supplier relationship whereby Lexar is the primary technology behind the Viking Flash product line. Viking is a market leading supplier of Flash products to the consumer as well as OEM markets and as a result of the partnership is experiencing dramatic year over year sales increases. "Thanks to our customers, Viking has increased the yearly sales run rate for flash memory by over 300%," adds McCusker. "And we expect to continue this success as the mass appeal for this type of memory grows."
About Viking Components
Viking Components Inc., markets its computer memory, flash and communication products for leading OEM, VAR and retail businesses through a broad network of worldwide distributors and reseller chains. Viking, one of three CMTL(sm) Gold Certified memory manufacturers, has secured relationships with industry-leading suppliers including Intel® Corp. [Nasdaq: INTC], Toshiba®, Elpida® Memory, Inc. and Micron® Technology [NYSE: MU].
Viking has ISO registered facilities in its Rancho Santa Margarita, California headquarters (ISO 9001) and its European headquarters based in Dublin, Ireland (ISO 9002). For more information about Viking Components, please call (800) 338.2361 in the U.S., +353.1466.0090 in Europe, +65.235.8832 in Singapore, or visit the Viking Web site at: www.vikingcomponents.com.