Cornice Fires Back At Seagate

By Mark Hachman  |  Posted 2004-08-18
Small-form-factor storage maker Cornice Inc. said it had filed a counterclaim against Seagate Technologies in the latest round of patent litigation between the two companies.

In June, Seagate filed suit against Cornice seeking an injunction preventing sales of all Cornice products, which include stripped-down hard-drive-like storage devices designed for consume electronics devices. The suit also asked for an unspecified amount of damages.

Cornice said it is seeking a ruling from a Delaware district court that the six patents Seagate is contesting are invalid, unenforceable, and not infringed by Cornices products, the company said.

"Furthermore, Cornice alleges that Seagates lawsuit is objectively baseless in that no reasonable litigant would have brought such a suit, and that Seagates actions constitute unfair competition and tortious interference under Colorado law, entitling Cornice to damages from Seagate," the company said in a statement.

Western Digital Corp., a second drive maker, has also filed suit claiming that Cornice has infringed certain patents, as well. A spokeswoman for Cornice said that the company was still evaluating WDs claim and would respond as necessary at the appropriate time.

Cornice said it has retained Matthew Powers, head of intellectual property litigation at Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP, to defend itself and to prosecute the counterclaims against Seagate.

Editors Note: This story was updated at 1:58 PM PDT on Aug. 18, 2004 with comments from a Cornice spokeswoman.

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