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Defending a French telecommunications leader against a patent troll

13 July 2020

One of France’s leading telecommunications operators

Multiple patent infringement actions against him brought by US Non-Practicing Entities (NPEs).

Patent trolling issue also involving patents essential to various telecommunication standards, such as the International Telecommunication Union’s DSL standards, the WiFi standard as well as cellular network standards (2G, 3G, 4G).

Risks associated with applications for a ban on telecommunications services provided to consumers.

Key Figures

Financial exposure against the client estimated at 32 million euros

More than 15 different parties (including major French operators and global telecom providers)


Manage the schedule of proceedings according to the expiry date of patents.

Manage FRAND negotiations to prevent provisional prohibition measures in accordance with the Court of Justice’s judgment C-170/13 Huawei v. ZTE of 16 July 2015.

Voluntary or forced involvement of suppliers in defence.

Coordination/close monitoring with all the other parties involved in the defence (suppliers and other operators) to oppose a common defence.


No prohibition measures pronounced against the client since the start of litigation in 2012

Creative defence with in particular:

  • Obtaining a compulsory disclosure order from the IEEE (US standards body) to allow research into the standardization process to be conducted.
  • Obtaining several decisions, in particular organizing the division of pleadings before the Paris Court of Justice, firstly on the validity of the patent and lighter infringement, and secondly on the FRAND issue.
  • Intervention in an opposition before the EPO and obtaining a stay of proceedings before the French court.

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