Citigroup settles Katz patent suit

Source: Citigroup

Citigroup (NYSE: C) and Ronald A. Katz Technology Licensing, L.P. (RAK) today announced the settlement of patent litigation between the parties and that, as part of the settlement, Citigroup has agreed to pay an undisclosed sum for a nonexclusive license under a comprehensive portfolio of patents that RAK owns relating to interactive voice applications.

The license covers Citigroup's services in the "Financial Services Call
Processing" and the "Automated Securities Transactions" Fields of Use. These
services are delivered through automated systems and live agents, including
customer service provided to consumer and business accounts. Other terms of
the license were not disclosed.

"Considering Citigroup's sophisticated call-processing systems, this highly significant license represents a powerful recognition of the scope and breadth of the patent portfolio held by Ronald A. Katz Technology Licensing, L.P." said Ronald A. Katz, Chief Executive of RAK.

According to RAK, the patents and pending applications in the RAK portfolio relate to interactive and automated call-processing and computer telephony, including product/service support; customer service; credit card and calling card authorization; prepaid cards; service bureaus; home shopping; remote ordering; merchandising; promotion; registration; contests; lotteries; as well as securing information from databases; interactive cable transactions and various other uses of toll free and local numbers.

The patent portfolio owned by RAK stems principally from pioneering work done in the field of interactive services, primarily by Ronald A. Katz, in the 1980's. The patents are widely licensed to a variety of firms, including Advanta Corp., American Century, American Express, AT&T Corp., Bank of America Corporation, First Data Corp., Household International, Inc., HSBC Bank USA, IBM, MCI Inc., Microsoft, Prudential Financial, Inc., Sprint Corp., Verizon California and its affiliates, Wachovia Corporation, Wells Fargo & Company and a large number of other companies offering interactive services.

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