Marvell Technology, a semiconductor business out of Santa Clara, has just been handed what could be the biggest patent infringement verdict of the year. A jury in Pennsylvania hit the company with a $1.17 billion verdict after it was found to have violated a number of patents belonging to Carnegie Mellon University.
The Contra Costa Times reports that the $1.2 billion verdict came after the jury found that Marvell had willfully infringed upon patents belonging to Carnegie Mellon. That could be especially troubling as the finding will allow the judge to impose a fines up to three times what the jury originally awarded the university.
So, what patents did Marvell infringe upon to warrant this kind of verdict? The company used a technology developed at Carnegie Mellon that allows chips to better read data stored on high-speed disk drives. The jury found that Marvell had used the technology in billions of its chips without licensing it from the university.
Marvell’s record patent judgment follows another billion dollar patent judgment from earlier this year when Apple won out against Samsung in a $1.04 billion patent case. Samsung has been fighting back against it since, and Marvell vows to do the same. The company says that it will seek to overturn the verdict, and will even take the case to the U.S. Federal Circuit Court of Appeals if necessary according to the Chicago Tribune.
Despite promising to fight the verdict, the judgment has hit Marvell’s stock pretty hard. The company’s share price dropped 10 percent to $7.40 on Wednesday, and is down another 3.18 percent today for a share price of $7.17.