Back in January 2011, the Chinese telecom equipment company Huawei filed a suit against Motorola and Nokia Siemens for a potential threat of Motorla sharing Huawei trade secrets to Nokia Siemens. In practical terms, what Huawei wanted was to prevent the transfer of manpower from Motorola’s UMTS and GSM equipment businesses to Nokia Siemens Network, a move that would bring $1.2 billion to Motorola by selling its wireless infrastructure business to Nokia Siemens.
“The entire intent of filing the injunction is to prevent our intellectual property from being handed over to one of our competitors on a silver platter,” said Bill Plummer, a vice president of external affairs for Huawei.
At the moment the two parties managed to find an agreement outside the judicial court, eliminating the possibility of future appeals. Huawei agreed for Motorola to transfer its contract to Nokia Siemens in exchange of a fee,bringing former allegations between the two companies on the selling of trade secrets from the past years.
“We regret that these disputes have occurred between our two companies,” Greg Brown, president and CEO of Motorola Solutions, said in a statement. “Motorola Solutions values the long-standing relationship we have had with Huawei. After reviewing the facts, we decided to resolve these matters and return to our traditional relationship of confidence and trust. I am pleased that we can again focus on having a cooperative and productive relationship.”
This reminds us of the long and dirty legal battle between HP and Oracle regarding Mark Hurd’s resignation and leaving for Oracle. Under different premises, HP filed a suit against former sales executive Adrian Jones for stealing trade secrets and afterwards joining Oracle.
But it’s not only trade secrets that fan the flames. In the last week we’ve covered a handful of lawsuits for patent infringement between industry giants such as Kodak, Apple, Nokia and many others. Such actions not only leak millions of dollars from companies, but also time and effort, thus triggering a more heedful approach, just as Google’s decision to Nortel’s patent portfolio in order to avoid further complications.