Ericsson to be investigated by Indian watchdog

Swedish vendor Ericsson will be investigated by the Competition Commission of India (CCI) following a complaint from handset manufacturer Micromax.

Micromax alleges that Ericsson has abused its position in the industry by forcing smaller companies to pay extortionate royalties for its GSM-related Standard Essential Patents [SEPs].

The CCI noted that there was a “fit case for thorough investigation by the Director General into the allegations made by the informant [Micromax], and violations, if any, of the provisions of the Competition Act”, adding that Ericsson’s terms for patent use go against the principle of FRAND (fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory).

Ericsson has confirmed that CCI will begin an investigation based on the Indian Competition Act. In March 2013, Ericsson sued Micromax in the Delhi High Court for patent infringement, claiming it had made “numerous attempts” to sign an agreement with Micromax based on FRAND terms.

The Swedish vendor has stated its willingness to cooperate with the CCI in the investigation.

 

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