US Markets

GlobalFoundries sues TSMC, wants US import ban on some products

Credit: REUTERS/TYRONE SIU

Contract chipmaker GlobalFoundries sued larger rival and Apple supplier TSMC for patent infringement, seeking to stop imports into the United States and Germany of products made with the allegedly infringed technologies.

By Josh Horwitz

SHANGHAI, Aug 27 (Reuters) - Contract chipmaker GlobalFoundries sued larger rival and Apple supplier TSMC for patent infringement, seeking to stop imports into the United States and Germany of products made with the allegedly infringed technologies.

In lawsuits filed on Monday in the United States and Germany, GlobalFoundries also sought unspecified "significant" damages from Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC) 2330.TW based on the Taiwanese firm's unlawful use of its technology in its "tens of billions of dollars of sales".

The complaints alleged that chip manufacturing technologies used by TSMC infringed GlobalFoundries' 16 patents, and sought to prevent imports of customers' products containing chips produced with the infringing technologies, the Santa Clara, California-based firm said in a statement.

It did not elaborate on products affected by the alleged infringement, but listed Apple Inc AAPL.O, Qualcomm Inc QCOM.O, Alphabet Inc's GOOGL.O Google, Nvidia Corp NVDA.O, Lenovo Group 0922.HK and Taiwan' MediaTek Inc 2454.TW among TSMC's customers affected by the complaints.

TSMC called the allegations "baseless".

"We are disappointed to see a foundry peer resort to meritless lawsuits instead of competing in the marketplace with technology," it said in a statement.

It added that it would "fight vigorously, using any and all

options" to protect its proprietary technologies.

Nvidia declined to comment. TSMC's other clients were not immediately available for comment.

In a move to highlight its investment in the United States amid an intensifying U.S. trade war with China over Beijing's alleged unfair practices involving technology transfers and intellectual property, GlobalFoundries also said the lawsuits are aimed at protecting its U.S. investment.

"While semiconductor manufacturing has continued to shift to Asia, GlobalFoundries has bucked the trend by investing heavily in the American and European semiconductor industries," GlobalFoundries, which is owned by Abu Dhabi's state investment vehicle, said.

"This action is critical ... to safeguard the American and European manufacturing base."

(Reporting by Josh Horwitz; Editing by Stephen Coates and Muralikumar Anantharaman)

((Josh.Horwitz@thomsonreuters.com; +86 21 20830007;))

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

Latest Markets Videos

    Reuters

    Reuters, the news and media division of Thomson Reuters, is the world’s largest international multimedia news provider reaching more than one billion people every day. Reuters provides trusted business, financial, national, and international news to professionals via Thomson Reuters desktops, the world's media organizations, and directly to consumers at Reuters.com and via Reuters TV.

    Learn More