Business

Aussie wins hundreds of millions

Ric Richardson.
Ric Richardson.

BYRON Bay inventor Ric Richardson, 49, has settled with software giant Microsoft after a nine-year legal battle.

The out-of-court deal struck this month is reportedly worth millions, although under the terms of the agreement its value must remain confidential.

In 2009 a US court found Microsoft had been using patented anti-piracy software developed by Mr Richardson.

Microsoft was ordered to pay his company Uniloc $US 388 million. The decision, however, was overturned just five months later. Last year an appeal upheld the original verdict.

A trial had been under way in the US to determine the amount Microsoft should pay Uniloc when the settlement was reached.

It is understood the deal is a licensing agreement which will not involve a lump-sum payment.

This week Mr Richardson posted on his blog that he would not be disclosing the sum of settlement.

"...it is for the good of the company and for our ongoing interaction with Microsoft over time," Mr Richardson said.

Mr Richardson said he was too busy working on other projects to think about what he was going to do with the money.

"Stopping everything to think about the money side is just not important at the moment," he said.

"For the moment, all I want to enjoy is the satisfaction of sharing with the team in the benefits of having been tenacious and patient.

"Simply, the Uniloc team were the guys that reached settlement with Microsoft. Their ability to represent the shareholders and me as the inventor was established over many years of trusted negotiation and work."

"The biggest thing at this moment so soon after the moment is the satisfaction of having stayed the course in support of the team at Uniloc. They really have done a great job."

The Uniloc technology is based on a patent granted to the inventor, Mr Richardson, who is also a principal in the Uniloc Company. The original patent application was dated late 1992 in Australia and granted in the USA in 1996 and covers a technology popularly known as product activation, try-and-buy software and machine locking.

Uniloc has sued 73 companies over violating its patent, with 25 of those companies having settled, according to Uniloc.

Topics:  byron bay lawsuit microsoft money



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