Viasat and Loral settle patent dispute with US$100 million payment from Loral in return for technology rights

by | Sep 8, 2014 | Satellites, Seradata News | 0 comments

In a settlement of a legal dispute over a long running patent infringement case, the space operations company, Loral, along with its one-time Space Systems/Loral subsidiary, has agreed to pay the space operations company, Viasat, US$100 million.

Space Systems/Loral was alleged to have used proprietary technology on the Viasat-1 spacecraft (which the company was building for Viasat) on other customers’ satellites; specifically Jupiter 1/EchoStar 17.  After being found guilty in a jury trial, Loral originally had damages and costs of US$283 million awarded against it by a court in April 2014.  This amount was later overturned in an appeal – though the verdict stood.  

To avoid a new expensive trial having to take place, an out of court settlement has now been reached in which a two-stage payment of US$100 million would be made to Viasat as damages, but with Space Systems/Loral in return now having full rights to use the “Viasat technology”.  The legal costs split is to be settled by arbitration.

Viasat-1 Courtesy: Space Systems/Loral

Viasat-1 Courtesy: Space Systems/Loral

Comment by David Todd:  The payment is a “fair way out” for both sides, not keen to pursue further legal action.

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