Authored by Michelle Carniaux and Michael E. Sander
As inter partes review and covered business method proceedings become more popular, it is becoming the norm for patent owners to face an IPR or CBM challenge during any patent monetization campaign. Below we provide a ranking of the top 10 patent owners having the most IPR or CBM petitions filed against their patents.
Surprisingly, Zond, Inc. tops our list with an astonishing 62 petitions for IPR filed against its patents. According to their website zpulser.com, Zond is an operating company outside of Boston that makes “[p]ulsed DC plasma generators for magnetron discharge,” a technology used in the semiconductor industry. Petitioners in the proceedings include larger semiconductor foundries such as Intel, TSMC, and Fujitsu. Curiously, the technology is also apparently used to make razor blades, and Zond has sued Gillette for patent infringement. Gillette is responsible for six of the 62 IPR petitions filed against Zond’s patents.
Intellectual Ventures, the well-known patent aggregation firm, unsurprisingly, is the runner up and is involved in their fair share of proceedings.
We have written several posts about VirnetX, which ranks third on our list. Of the 37 petitions for IPR filed against VirnetX patents, Microsoft filed 12 within the last four months.
Coming in fourth place is American Vehicular Sciences, a non-practicing patent licensing entity. American Vehicular Sciences is a subsidiary of Acacia Research.
Clouding IP, another non-practicing patent licensing entity, takes fifth place. Clouding IP, with patents concerning cloud technology, is facing Oracle with respect to 18 IPR petitions, seven of which were filed just last month. The other petitioners include SAP and Rackspace.
Rounding out the top seven are two operating companies Magna Electronics (24) and NuVasive (18). Magna is an automotive supplier whose patents are being challenged by industry competitors such as TRW Automotive and Valeo. NuVasive is a medical device company with products concerning minimally invasive spine surgery and faces challenges from medical device maker Medtronic.
Together, petitions against the patents of these top 10 patent owners account for 273 IPR and CBM petitions filed, which is over 18% of the IPR and CBM petitions filed thus far.