Forgent Networks has today made good their 2002 claim to JPEG and their intention to pursue licensing revenue from companies who use it. They own United States patent 4,698,672 which covers the JPEG compression standard, this patent was created by Compression Labs who Forgent bought back in 1997. Over the last two years, Forgent's has generated $90 million from licensing the patent to 30 different companies. The camera companies include Canon, Kodak, Fuji, Kyocera, HP, Panasonic, Ricoh, Toshiba, Concord and software suppliers Adobe, Macromedia, JASC.

Press release:

Forgent Networks Sues 31 Companies for Patent Infringement

AUSTIN, Texas--(BUSINESS WIRE)--April 22, 2004--Forgent(TM) Networks (Nasdaq:FORG) announced today that its wholly owned subsidiary, Compression Labs Inc., has initiated litigation against 31 companies for infringement of United States Patent No. 4,698,672 (the '672 Patent) in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, Marshall Division. Over the last two years, Forgent's intellectual property business has generated approximately $90 million from licensing the '672 Patent to 30 different companies in Asia, Europe and the United States. Forgent has sought to reach agreements on numerous occasions with all these companies, but as of today, none of the defendants have chosen to license. Forgent has retained Jenkens & Gilchrist, a national law firm, and The Roth Law Firm, of Marshall Texas, to represent it in the litigation.

The defendants are: Adobe Systems Incorporated (Nasdaq:ADBE), Agfa Corporation, Apple Computer Incorporated (Nasdaq:AAPL), Axis Communications Incorporated, Canon USA, Concord Camera Corporation (Nasdaq:LENS), Creative Labs Incorporated, Dell Incorporated (Nasdaq:DELL), Eastman Kodak Company (NYSE:EK), Fuji Photo Film Co U.S.A, Fujitsu Computer Products of America, Gateway Inc. (NYSE:GTW), Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ), International Business Machines Corp. (NYSE:IBM), JASC Software, JVC Americas Corporation, Kyocera Wireless Corporation, Macromedia Inc. (Nasdaq:MACR), Matsushita Electric Corporation of America, Oce' North America Incorporated, Onkyo Corporation, PalmOne Inc. (Nasdaq:PLMO), Panasonic Communications Corporation of America, Panasonic Mobile Communications Development Corporation of USA, Ricoh Corporation, Riverdeep Incorporated (d.b.a. Broderbund), Savin Corporation, Thomson S.A. (NYSE:TMS), Toshiba Corporation and Xerox Corporation (NYSE:XRX).

The '672 Patent relates to digital image compression, and fields of use include any digital still image device used to compress, store, manipulate, print or transmit digital still images such as digital cameras. However, the '672 patent extends beyond digital cameras and includes many digital still image devices such as personal digital assistants, cellular telephones, printers, scanners and other devices used to compress, store, manipulate, print or transmit digital still images. Forgent has the exclusive right to use, license and enforce all the claims under the '672 Patent in all fields of use involving digital still image compression.

"Forgent is committed to developing all of its assets and technologies to maximize shareholder value. We believe we will prevail in this litigation as the '672 Patent is valid, enforceable and infringed," said Richard Snyder, chairman and CEO of Forgent. "It's unfortunate that despite the many opportunities these companies have had to license the patent, they have all declined to participate, leaving us no alternative but to litigate."

dpreview "Forgent to get rich from JPEG" story from 2002

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