BlackBerry to pay Nokia $137 million in payment dispute

Reuters News
Posted: Dec 01, 2017 9:32 AM

HELSINKI (Reuters) - Canada's BlackBerry <BB.TO> <BB.N> has been ordered to pay Nokia <NOKIA.HE> $137 million by an international court in a payment dispute, but the Canadian company said it would continue to pursue a separate claim over patent infringement.

The International Court of Arbitration ruled that Blackberry had failed to make certain payments to Nokia under a patent license contract.

The dispute did not involve intellectual property (IP) infringement, but BlackBerry said it would continue to pursue separate patent infringement claims against Nokia.

BlackBerry filed a complaint in February, alleging that several of the Finnish network equipment maker's base stations and related software infringed on 11 of its patents. Nokia sells these products to telecom operators.

"Nokia continues to believe that BlackBerry's unrelated claims of patent infringement by Nokia are without merit," the Finnish company said in a statement.

BlackBerry said it planned to take a charge as a result of the court ruling, but did not disclose when it would record it. Nokia said a significant portion of the amount awarded had already been recognized in its financials.

Monetizing BlackBerry's IP is a key part of Chief Executive John Chen's plan for turning around the company whose revenue has declined for six straight years as sales of its once ubiquitous smartphones tumbled.

Nokia sold its once-dominant phone business in 2014, sticking to its network equipment business and a broad patent portfolio. It has recently signed smartphone patent deals with Samsung Electronics <005930.KS>, Apple <AAPL.O>, Xiaomi Technology <XTC.UL> and LG Electronics <066570.KS>.

Blackberry shares were down 2.1 percent while Nokia was off 1.4 percent by 1503 GMT.

(Reporting by Jussi Rosendahl in Helsinki and Ahmed Farhatha in Bengaluru; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta and David Evans)