Ericsson asks ITC to ban Samsung product imports to US

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Swedish vendor piles pressure on Samsung to sign new patent licensing deal.

Ericsson Monday stepped up its ongoing patent suit against Samsung Electronics Co. over patent infringement, by asking the U.S. International Trade Commission to ban imports of Samsung products.

The move comes after Ericsson, the world’s largest maker of mobile network infrastructure, last week filed a suit against Samsung in a U.S. federal court in Texas for allegedly infringing a number of its mobile-technology patents, after the two companies failed to agree on licensing terms, despite two years of talks.

“We anticipate that the ITC will resolve our patent infringement claims in our favor,” Ericsson said in a statement on Monday, adding that it hopes that this latest action will prompt Samsung to sign a cross-license agreement with Ericsson. Officials at Samsung weren’t immediately available to comment.

According to last week’s court filings, Ericsson claims that Samsung is seeking to drastically reduce the fee it pays Ericsson to license so-called standard essential patents, which protect inventions that are incorporated into broader technologies used throughout the industry.

Samsung, on the other hand, said Ericsson’s licensing fees are too high, while Ericsson said reducing the fee Samsung pays would give Samsung an unfair advantage over competitors that also have licensed Ericsson’s technology.

Ericsson is calling for the Texas court to impose an injunction against all Samsung products that infringe Ericsson’s patents, potentially pulling Samsung products from U.S. store shelves if Ericsson wins the case.

Ericsson is also seeking damages for the period over which Samsung has lacked a patent agreement with Ericsson.

At 1342 GMT shares in Ericsson traded 1.7% higher at SEK61.50.