In response to a patent infringement lawsuit filed by Israel-based solar PV inverter manufacturer SolarEdge, Chinese telecommunications firm Huawei responded claiming there is no infringement and that it would “defend its rights vigorously”.
However, today SolarEdge announced that it has extended its lawsuit pending in the Mannheim District Court, Germany, against Huawei Technologies, a Chinese entity, Huawei Technologies Düsseldorf, a German entity, and WATTKRAFT Solar, a German distributor for Huawei, by asserting two additional patents related to its power optimiser technology.
Also with regard to these two additional patents, SolarEdge asserts unauthorised use of patented technology, which is prohibited by law, and is intended to protect SolarEdge’s significant investment in its innovative power optimiser technology.
Seeking inter alia monetary damages, an injunction with regard to the German market, and recall of infringing Huawei optimisers from the German market, the lawsuits are intended to prevent the defendants from selling any optimisers as far as they do infringe upon SolarEdge’s intellectual property on either of the two patents now asserted in Germany.
Huawei’s response to the initial claim
Huawei responded to SolarEdge’s initial complaint with a written statement in June. Amidst highlighting its business successes and its research and development work — boasting 74,307 patents granted as of the end of 2017 — Huawei stated 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.
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The basis for the SolarEdge lawsuit
Guy Sella, the CEO, Chairman, and Founder of the smart energy firm, said: “SolarEdge has strived to advance the PV industry by overcoming limitations of standard PV systems through the introduction of its innovative DC optimisation technology, in our view making solar energy more attractive and accessible.”
He continued: “These advancements, resulting from dedication, engineering expertise, and significant investment in R&D, can only achieve their full potential when safeguarded by an industry that respects healthy and fair competition.
“What we view as illegal use of proprietary technology can stifle the solar industry during this critical period of global energy transformation. Our actions are meant to ensure the integrity of the entire PV industry, secure a level playing field, and protect SolarEdge’s intellectual property.”
As an international company operating in the smart energy technology market with world-class engineering capabilities, SolarEdge holds 126 awarded patents, 169 additional patent applications worldwide, and other extensive intellectual property covering smart energy technology.
The firm has shipped 7.5GW of systems worldwide, among which includes 25.2 million power optimisers and 1.1 million inverters.
In June of 2018, SolarEdge announced that it had filed its first patent infringement lawsuit in Germany against Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd., Huawei Technologies Düsseldorf GmbH, and WATTKRAFT Solar GmbH, relating to its patented inverter technology.