Chinese telecommunications giant Huawei responded late last week to a patent infringement lawsuit filed by Israel-based solar PV inverter manufacturer SolarEdge, claiming it did not believe it had done anything wrong and that it would “defend its rights vigorously.”
SolarEdge filed its patent infringement lawsuit in the Regional Court of Mannheim in Germany, against Huawei, its German subsidiary, and the German distributor for Huawei WATTKRAFT Solar. SolarEdge’s lawsuit asserts that Huawei made unauthorized use of patented technology and the company has filed its lawsuit in an attempt “to protect SolarEdge’s significant investment in its innovative DC optimized inverter technology” and “to prevent the defendants from selling any multi-level inverters infringing upon SolarEdge’s PV inverter technology protected in the asserted patent in Germany.”
“The success of the entire PV industry has been and continues to be driven by innovative technology that makes PV energy more affordable and ubiquitous,” claimed Guy Sella, CEO, Chairman, and Founder of SolarEdge, last week. “Such innovation requires significant financial investment and years of dedication and hard work from skilled R&D engineers. The PV industry cannot sustain such efforts under the constant threat of, in our view, illegal use of proprietary technology and we will not remain silent as our intellectual property is exploited.”
However, while attending Intersolar Europe, Huawei responded to SolarEdge’s complaint with a written statement to several media outlets. Amidst highlighting its business successes and its research and development work — boasting 74,307 patents granted as of the end of 2017 — Huawei added that it “has a strong record of respecting [the intellectual property rights (IPR)] of others, in addition to doing whatever is required to protect our own IPR assets.”
The company’s statement went on to specifically clarify its position regarding SolarEdge’s lawsuit:”Huawei has just been served with the complaint filed by SolarEdge, and is evaluating the claims. Huawei does not believe that it has infringed any valid patent rights of SolarEdge and, accordingly, will defend its rights vigorously.
“Huawei is always customer-centric and, together with our partners, will continuously invest in R&D and technology innovation, to accelerate the positive development of the solar industry. If, to the extent that our customer receive any IP infringement assertion based on Huawei products delivered, Huawei will use every means to defend our products and protect our customers not to be affected by such assertions.”
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