Published in Transportation

Nokia opens negotiations with Daimler

by on10 December 2019

But Daimler sees it as the Finn end of the wedge

Finnish telecoms equipment maker Nokia has suspended legal action against German carmaker Daimler in the hope that mediation will resolve their dispute over technology licencing fees.

Daimler does not seem particularly interested and said it had a different legal opinion on the dispute.

Daimler, along with Bury, Continental, Valeo and Gemalto complained to the European Commission this year about fees demanded by Nokia for patents related to car communications.

Nokia has in recent years started ten court cases against Daimler in Germany for alleged patent infringements. Daimler, meanwhile, has issued its own lawsuits against Nokia.

However, Nokia said that constructive negotiation was the best way to resolve matters, having last week offered to enter into independent mediation as part of efforts to avoid an EU antitrust investigation.

Nokia said: “To ensure there is time for this mediation to be successful, we have unilaterally chosen to postpone the pending hearing on 10 December in Germany. We trust that Daimler and its tier 1 suppliers will now engage in these meaningful efforts to reach a settlement. There is more to gain for all if we work together.”

Daimler said: “We have a different legal opinion on the question of how to license essential patents for telecommunications standards in the automotive industry. Nokia has so far refused to license our suppliers directly on a comprehensive basis."

EU antitrust chief Margrethe Vestager, however, welcomed the mediation efforts, saying the postponement of the court hearing was a positive move.

“This is why we think it is a good thing that they now try mediation at the International Chamber of Commerce,” she told reporters. “It would be a good thing if there could be a mutual understanding.”

Nokia has also offered to negotiate with the car parts makers instead of only Daimler on licencing fees.

Carmakers argue that car parts makers should deal with the licensing fees rather than them and that patent holders should be open to negotiations with whichever company is interested in using their patents.


Last modified on 10 December 2019
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