The legal dispute between display manufacturers Samsung Display and BOE is escalating fast. Following lawsuits from the latter, the Korean firm has now filed a complaint against its rival. In its complaint filed with the United States International Trade Commission (ITC), Samsung has accused BOE of violating trade secrets.
Samsung drags BOE to the court over trade dispute
Samsung and BOE have had a lot of differences in recent years. The two display manufacturers had a dispute over royalties, prompting the Korean firm’s smartphone division to remove the latter from its supply chain. However, things took an ugly turn in January this year when Samsung Display alleged its rival of cloning its technology. It didn’t attack BOE directly but tried stopping wholesalers in the US from commercializing the cloned OLED panels.
The Korean firm said the displays were illegally manufactured in the US using its patents without permission. This prompted an investigation into BOE by the ITC. The Chinese firm retaliated by filing a barrage of lawsuits against Samsung in China. Not only did it target Samsung’s display division, but other business units as well, including the semiconductor and investment divisions. This happened in May.
A couple of months later, the Korean media reported that Samsung was preparing to hit back at BOE. We now have confirmation that it has filed a complaint against its Chinese display rival over the matter. This time, it’s targeting BOE directly without involving wholesalers. This is reportedly the first time Samsung has complained about the Chinese firm with the ITC. It has also named seven BOE affiliates in its legal filing.
The complaint, filed on October 31, accuses BOE of violating a US Tariff Act covering the “importation and sales of organic light-emitting diode display modules and components in the US,” The Korea Herald reports (via). It also covers “unfair methods of competition,” including infringement of intellectual property, obtaining confidential information from employees, and fake employment.
The ITC’s trial begins in January 2024
According to the report, the ITC will begin its investigation based on Samsung’s complaint in December. The trial in the case is expected to begin on January 22, 2024. The International Trade Commission may not announce its verdict on the matter until June next year. The Commission previously backed Samsung’s claims that BOE infringed on its display patents. Time will tell whether a formal investigation finds the Chinese display maker guilty.