Vringo files patent suit against Microsoft


Intellectual property company wields same two patents it used to successfully sue Google.

Vringo Inc. said it filed a patent suit against Microsoft Corp., using the same two patents it utilized in a suit it won against Google Inc. and others late last year.

Vringo, a mobile-technology and intellectual-property company, had sued Google–the primary defendant–as well as AOL Inc., IAC/InterActiveCorp. and others, alleging infringement of two of its patents used to select and position advertising on Internet-search results. It won about $30 million in damages and was granted future royalties from the suit.

That case remains in its post-trial phase. Google has suggested it will appeal, saying it would ultimately win the case.

In the new suit, Vringo alleged Microsoft had willfully infringed the two patents with its search engine, Bing.com.

A Microsoft representative wasn’t immediately available for comment.

Vringo was founded in 2006 with a focus on mobile technology, but last March it agreed to merge with privately held Innovate/Protect, which now controls most of the company and brought it into the intellectual property industry. Innovate/Protect, which bought the two patents from Lycos along with six others for $3.2 million, has alleged that the technology it owns is widely used in the search industry.

Since the two patents were found valid and infringed in the Google suit, Vringo had been expected to file additional suits against other technology companies using those patents.

Vringo’s shares were up 3.5% at $3.25. The stock is up 27% over the past three months. Microsoft’s shares were down three cents at $27.82.