Harris Corp. and NEC Corp. have jointly announced that the two parties have reached a global settlement related to patent litigation. In conjunction with the settlement, Harris has agreed to dismiss its patent infringement lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, and NEC has agreed to dismiss its patent infringement lawsuits filed in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California and the Federal Court of Canada.

As a result of the settlement, Harris has granted NEC a royalty-bearing, non-exclusive license for its telephone switching patents including patents for Private Branch Exchanges (PBX) and key telephone systems. Harris developed the technology for most of the referenced patents in its former telecom switch business. Likewise, NEC has also granted Harris a royalty-bearing, non-exclusive license under NEC's digital microwave radio (DMR) patents. In addition, NEC agreed to sell, and Harris agreed to purchase certain of its PBX patents. Also, the parties agreed to a patent cross license as to all other product categories. Other detailed terms of the settlement are confidential and were not disclosed.

"We are pleased to reach a favorable settlement with NEC Corp. regarding our patent rights," said Gene Cavallucci, Harris vice president-general counsel. "Harris is committed to protecting its valuable patent portfolio and intellectual property, now considerably enhanced by our purchase of PBX patents from NEC. The addition of these patents further strengthens our position as a cutting-edge provider of government and commercial communications systems and services."

“NEC is pleased to have resolved these litigations with terms and conditions that recognize the value of NEC’s DMR patents,” said Botaro Hirosaki, senior vice president and executive general manager of NEC’s Intellectual Asset Operations Unit. “We value our intellectual property as an extremely important company asset and will continue to take a firm position in enforcing its rights if our patents are infringed by other companies in the field.”