BlackBerry ordered to shell out $137 million in payments to Nokia

BlackBerry ordered to shell out $137 million in payments to Nokia

BlackBerry has been ordered to pay Nokia a whopping $137 million by the International Court of Arbitration as the Canadian company had failed to make certain payments to Nokia under a patent license agreement.

The court may have given its verdict, but BlackBerry has said that it will be pursuing a separate patent infringement case against Nokia. Earlier this year BlackBerry managed to beat Qualcomm Inc in a payments dispute and won a $940 million payout.

The Canadian company’s revenues from smartphone sales have declined to almost nothing over the last couple of years because of which the company changed its focus to earning from its patent portfolio. BlackBerry said that it intends to generate significantly more revenue from its portfolio of some 40,000 patents through licensing deals with other technology companies.

It is often difficult for investors to value a company`s patent portfolio given the opaque nature of licensing deals and disputes.

“Patent issues are going to come up from time to time and as one-offs,” said Todd Coupland, an analyst at CIBC World Markets. “Getting in front of them, unless there is some detail, is going to be tough.”

BlackBerry shares were down 1.9 percent in midday Toronto trading, Nokia closed 2 percent lower in Helsinki.

BlackBerry stressed back in February that it has moved ahead with its decision of filing separate patent infringement cases against Nokia for alleged patent violation through Finnish network equipment maker’s base stations and related software.

Nokia, which sells these products to telecom operators, said in a statement on Friday that it believes those infringement claims “are without merit.”

BlackBerry said it would take a GAAP charge on its results, but did not say when the ruling would hit its financials.

Nokia said a significant portion of the amount awarded had already been recognised in its financials.

Nokia sold its once-dominant phone business in 2014, sticking to its network equipment business and broad patent portfolio. It has licensed technology to smartphone makers Samsung Electronics, Apple, Xiaomi Technology and LG Electronics.


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