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Kingbright told to destroy LED stocks

Osram claims victory in a dispute with Taiwanese LED maker Kingbright, and signs a new patent deal with Toyoda Gosei.

Following a court ruling, Germany-based LED maker Osram Opto Semiconductors says that Taiwanese rival Kingbright will have to destroy stocks of its white LEDs held in Germany.

"The District Court of Düsseldorf has upheld almost all of the claims of Osram Opto Semiconductors," said the Regensburg firm.

Unsurprisingly, Kingbright has appealed against the decision, in which the court ruled that Kingbright may no longer sell many of its LED products in Germany.

Osram explained that, above all, the patents judged to have been infringed by Kingbright related to the production of white LEDs based on blue chips using a phosphor converter. The German firm is pursuing a similar lawsuit against Kingbright relating to LEDs made in China.

In late 2005, the Taiwanese firm had agreed a deal with the US LED maker Cree, under which it licensed US patent 6,600,175 (see related story).

That license allowed Kingbright to add a color-converting phosphor to Cree s blue chips, and then incorporate the resulting white-light emitters into its products.

At the time, Cree said that Kingbright would be using Cree's LED chips exclusively in its white LEDs.

Osram has also signed up to a new patent agreement with Japanese rival Toyoda Gosei over the mutual use of InGaN technologies that the two companies have developed.

According to Osram, the exchange will make it much easier to develop, manufacture and market new InGaN-based LED products with improved luminous intensity.

The agreement also covers InGaN-based laser designs.

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