Espeed loses OMX patent appeal

Espeed loses OMX patent appeal

Swedish exchange operator and trading systems vendor OMX says an appeals court in the US has upheld a ruling stating that its technology doesn't violate a patent held by Cantor Fitzgerald subsidiary eSpeed, removing the threat of liability claims.

OMX was named in a suit filed by eSpeed in 2003 in connection with its delivery of software for electronic fixed income outfit BrokerTec, which is now owned by Icap.

In February, 2005, the US district court rejected the claim, which was appealed by eSpeed in April 2006.

In a statement OMX says the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has upheld the a district court's ruling that eSpeed's patent was not valid.

OMX says eSpeed was claiming damages of approximately $100 million but it had not made any provisions to cover potential losses from the suit.

Magnus Böcker, president and CEO, OMX, says the decision "shows that OMX has a solid command of intellectual property rights relating to our products".

The failure to win the appeal has led to demands from eSpeed's largest shareholder Chapman Capital for the retention of an independent auditor to review a joint services agreement that exists between eSpeed and other Cantor Fitzgerald units. Among other beefs, the fund wants to see Cantor Fitzgerald take on some of the litigation expenses and other costs incurred by eSpeed during the dispute.

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