STMicroelectronics and InvenSense, the leading makers of MEMS based motion sensors, announced this week that they have settled all pending proceedings between them and have entered into a patent cross license agreement. The two companies had instituted various proceedings beginning in May 2012 in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California, the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and with the United States International Trade Commission (ITC). This settlement and patent cross license agreement resolves all such actions. Under terms of the settlement, neither ST nor InvenSense has made any admission of liability with respect to such proceedings. Other terms between the parties have not been disclosed.
InvenSense’ main business has been the low-end MEMS based motion sensors for consumer electronics applications such as smartphones, tablets, wearables, gaming devices, optical image stabilization, and remote controls for smart TVs. In October 2013, the company announced that it has acquired the MEMS microphone business line from Analog Devices (ADI) for $100 million in cash. As a result of that acquisition, approximately 30 to 40 employees moved from ADI to InvenSense. InvenSense is headquartered in San Jose, California and has offices in China, Taiwan, Korea, Japan, Slovakia, and Wilmington, Massachusetts. InvenSense is a fabless company and is "dual-sourcing" the manufacturing of its MEMS chips at TSMC and Global Foundries.
STMicroelectronics is one of the largest MEMS makers worldwide. The company also provides other types of sensor chips and ICs. In 2013, the company's net revenues were $8.08 billion with a net loss of $0.56 per share. ST completed the split up of ST-Ericsson in 2013.
"Fourth quarter revenue and gross margin results were well in line with our outlook range, coming in at the mid-point of our guidance, which translated into positive operating income before impairment and restructuring and a substantial positive free cash flow," said ST's President and CEO Carlo Bozotti.
"In 2013, we grew 3.2% excluding the former ST-Ericsson products, a better performance than our served market, with the main contributions coming from our microcontrollers and automotive products. We also made good progress on our customer diversification and mass market and distribution initiatives. In addition, our leading-edge set-top box products and FD-SOI-based ASICs led to important design wins and traction with major worldwide operators and OEM customers," added Bozotti.
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