Chinese chipmaker YMTC sues Micron for patent infringement – ​​Portal

The Micron Technology logo can be seen on the US chip maker's offices in Shanghai

The Micron Technology logo is seen at the U.S. chipmaker’s offices in Shanghai, China, May 25, 2023. Portal/Aly Song/File Photo Acquire License Rights

Nov 12 (Portal) – Chinese chipmaker Yangtze Memory Technologies Co (YMTC) has filed a lawsuit against U.S. rival Micron Technology (MU.O) for infringing eight of its patents.

YMTC filed the lawsuit against Micron and its unit, Micron Consumer Products Group, on November 9 in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California.

According to the lawsuit, Micron used YMTC’s patented technology to fend off competition from YMTC and to gain and protect market share. It said Micron wasn’t paying its fair share for use of its patented inventions.

“Although we cannot discuss the details of the pending litigation, I can confirm that YMTC recently filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California against Micron Technology, Inc. for infringement of our company’s patents relating to the design, manufacture and …operation of 3D NAND technology,” YMTC said in a statement to Portal on Monday. “We are confident that this matter will be resolved expeditiously.”

Micron did not respond outside of regular business hours in the United States.

Micron makes DRAM chips and NAND flash memory chips and competes with South Korea’s Samsung Electronics (005930.KS) and SK Hynix (000660.KS), as well as Japan’s Kioxia, a unit of Toshiba (6502.T). YMTC is a much smaller competitor that was banned by the US from purchasing certain American components last year.

The U.S. has tightened restrictions on exporting chip-making technology to China in recent years due to security concerns.

In May, China said Micron products had failed a network security review and key infrastructure operators were banned from purchasing them.

Micron was embroiled in a dispute in 2018 with state-backed Chinese chipmaker Fujian Jinhua, which was accused and denied of stealing trade secrets. Later that year, key products were subject to a temporary ban on sales in China.

China was once Micron’s largest market, generating half of its $20 billion in revenue in fiscal 2017. That share shrank to 16% in 2022, a year in which the company closed DRAM operations in Shanghai.

Micron has said it remains committed to China. In June, the company said it would invest 4.3 billion yuan ($590 million) in its chip packaging plant in the city of Xian in the coming years, and exhibited for the first time at a trade fair in Shanghai this month .

($1 = 7.2934 Chinese Yuan Renminbi)

Reporting by Anirudh Saligrama, Yelin Mo and Brenda Goh; Edited by Christopher Cushing and Lincoln Feast.

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