U.S. court rejects Gemalto's Android patent lawsuit

(Reuters) - Gemalto NV, the French digital security company, said on Friday that the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit rejected its patent claim relating to the Android smart phone operating platform. Gemalto, which makes smart cards, filed a suit in the United States in October 2010 against Google, Motorola, Samsung and HTC, alleging that their Android applications infringed on its patents. The company's shares, which are traded in Amsterdam, fell 1.8 percent early on Friday. "Gemalto's has consistently patented and broadly licensed its innovation so we are certainly disappointed by this judgment with regards to the scope of use of some of our intellectual property," Olivier Piou, the company's chief executive, said in a statement. Piou said the decision would have "no impact on our historical patents licensing activity, nor on the company’s 2017 long-term objectives." A company spokeswoman could not immediately be reached for comment. Analysts at ING said the court's rejection was disappointing. "We had estimated that if Gemalto had won the case the company could have been entitled to either a one-off payment in damages, or higher royalty receipts that could amount to 30-50 million euros per annum," they said in a note. ING analysts estimated Gemalto's patent business contributes 15 million euros on an annual basis, but they said this could well have doubled, at least, if the company had won the lawsuit. "It thus erodes a 3 percent earnings increase potential." Gemalto employs more than 12,000 staff in 44 countries and had revenues of 2.4 billion euros ($3.27 billion) in 2013. ($1 = 0.7336 Euros) (Reporting by Anthony Deutsch. Editing by Jane Merriman)

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