Severstal NA Wins Auto-Grade Steel Patent Infringement Case Against ArcelorMittal
Severstal North America just released the following press release:
Dearborn, Mich. August 29, 2011 – Severstal North America announced today that the jury award it had won in its defense of ArcelorMittal’s patent infringement assertions was upheld by the trial judge. The trial judge ruled that the jury had sufficient facts to find ArcelorMittal’s patent, United States Patent 6,296,805, invalid and not infringed by Severstal’s commercial activity. Further, the trial judge ruled that there was no reason for a new trial as there was no error in the trial proceedings. This patent relates to hot rolled aluminum-coated, boron-bearing carbon steel of specified chemistries and having very specific mechanical properties.
In a separate, but technologically related matter, Severstal continues to successfully achieve favorable decisions in a patent reexamination proceeding before the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) brought by Severstal regarding United States Patent 6564,604, owned by ArcelorMittal. The patent concerns some of the technology used in the production of aluminum-coated, boron-bearing carbon steel, the end use for which is predominantly in highstrength automotive applications.
Severstal has never believed it infringes any of the claims but initiated the patent reexamination to allay the concerns of its customers. Earlier in the year, the USPTO affirmed its previous ruling and has now held that all of the claims of the ArcelorMittal patent are unpatentable for multiple reasons. ArcelorMittal has amended these claims and added new ones, but Severstal is confident these claims will fall, as the others have, earlier in the process. In anticipation of this decision, Severstal indicated that it has already developed the necessary expertise to provide the aluminum coated boron-bearing carbon steel per the requirements of the automotive manufacturers.
“While ArcelorMittal has amended its claims in light of this latest ruling, we are confident and pleased with the decision made by the United States Patent and Trademark Office in this matter,” said Sergei Kuznetsov, Chief Executive Officer of Severstal North America. “We have complete confidence in our ability to invalidate this patent once and for all, and sell these products. We are looking forward to better meeting the needs of our automotive customers as a result of this decision,” Mr. Kuznetsov continued.