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Veeco Injunction Against SGL Remains

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Court confirms ruling that SGL should be barred from selling wafer carriers for Chinese competitor AMEC's MOCVD tools

Veeco Instruments has announced that the US District Court for the Eastern District of New York has denied SGL Carbon (SGL) motion to suspend the November 2, 2017 preliminary injunction issued by the court prohibiting SGL's sale of wafer carriers for use in MOCVD systems made by Advanced Micro-Fabrication Equipment (AMEC).

SGL had filed a motion requesting that the court suspend, or 'stay' the preliminary injunction pending a forthcoming appeal by SGL to the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC).

"We are pleased that the court confirmed its prior ruling and denied SGL's request to stay the injunction," said John R. Peeler, chairman and CEO of Veeco. "We are confident that we will prevail before the appellate court in any appeal by SGL, and will continue to take steps in the US and abroad to enforce Veeco's IP rights."

The court's order means that the preliminary injunction, which prohibits SGL from shipping wafer carriers using Veeco's patented technology, will remain in place during the appeal by SGL. The appeal process at the CAFC usually takes over a year to complete.

In its appeal, SGL will bear the burden of convincing the CAFC that the preliminary injunction should be overturned. Appeals of preliminary injunctions are evaluated by the CAFC under the highly deferential "abuse of discretion" standard of review. As a result, Veeco believes that it is highly unlikely that the CAFC will overturn the preliminary injunction, especially in light of statistics showing that a substantial majority of preliminary injunctions are affirmed by the CAFC on appeal.

This action for patent infringement was commenced by Veeco against SGL Carbon, LLC and SGL Carbon SE on April 12, 2017 in the federal court for the Eastern District of New York.

SGL manufactures wafer carriers which are used in susceptorless MOCVD systems. In addition to the preliminary injunction, Veeco is seeking a post-trial permanent injunction, monetary damages and other relief.

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