American Superconductor Corporation (NASDAQ: AMSC), a global power technologies company, announced that it is taking a series of legal actions against Sinovel Wind Group Co. Ltd. (Sinovel). “Sinovel illegally obtained and used AMSC’s intellectual property to upgrade its 1.5 megawatt wind turbines in the field to meet proposed Chinese grid codes and to potentially allow for the use of core electrical components from other manufacturers,” American Superconductor said.
The latest agreement had called on AMSC to begin delivering core electrical components for Sinovel’s 5 MW wind turbine in the second fiscal quarter ending 30 September. They also decided to design and jointly develop advanced, multi-megawatt scale wind turbines that the Chinese vendor would sell in global wind energy markets.
AMSC is filing criminal and civil complaints in China against Sinovel and other parties alleging the illegal use of AMSC’s intellectual property. These cases follow an intensive investigation conducted by both AMSC and law enforcement. Based in part upon evidence obtained through the investigations, AMSC believes that Sinovel illegally obtained and used AMSC’s intellectual property to upgrade its 1.5 megawatt wind turbines in the field to meet proposed Chinese grid codes and to potentially allow for the use of core electrical components from other manufacturers.
AMSC is seeking to compel Sinovel and the other parties to cease and desist from infringing its intellectual property and is also seeking monetary damages to compensate AMSC for its economic losses resulting from the infringement. AMSC also has filed a claim for arbitration to compel Sinovel to pay AMSC for past product shipments and to accept all contracted but not yet delivered core electrical components and spare parts under all existing contracts with the Company. The arbitration claim was filed with the Beijing Arbitration Commission in accordance with the terms of AMSC’s supply contracts with Sinovel.
Additional information about the legal actions is contained in the Current Report on Form 8-K that AMSC is filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. AMSC is now operating its business based on the assumption that Sinovel will not be a customer.
"We are taking legal action against Sinovel based on its contractual breaches and strong evidence of its criminal misconduct," said AMSC President and Chief Executive Officer Daniel McGahn. "These actions send a clear message that AMSC is enforcing its intellectual property and commercial contracts."
Conference Call Notice
AMSC management will participate in a conference call with investors beginning at 9:00 a.m. Eastern Time on September 15. On this call, management will discuss the company’s legal actions against Sinovel Wind Group Co., Ltd. Those who wish to listen to the live conference call webcast should visit the "Investors" section of the company’s website at www.amsc.com/investors. The live call also can be accessed by dialing 719-325-2359 and using conference ID 5548126. A telephonic playback of the call will be available from 1:00 pm ET on September 15 through 1:00 pm ET through September 22. Please call 719-457-0820 and refer to conference ID 5548126 to access the playback.
AMSC offers an array of proprietary technologies and solutions spanning the electric power infrastructure — from generation to delivery to end use. The company is a leader in renewable energy, providing proven, megawatt-scale wind turbine designs and electrical control systems. The company also offers a host of Smart Grid technologies for power grid operators that enhance the reliability, efficiency and capacity of the grid, and seamlessly integrate renewable energy sources into the power infrastructure. These include superconductor power cable systems, grid-level surge protectors and power electronics-based voltage stabilization systems. AMSC’s technologies are protected by a broad and deep intellectual property portfolio consisting of hundreds of patents and licenses worldwide. More information is available at www.amsc.com.
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