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The Korean IPTAB decision to maintain Asahi Kasei’s Korean patent regarding patent infringement lawsuit against W-SCOPE Corporation, etc.

December 23, 2020
Asahi Kasei Corp.

On January 29, 2020, Asahi Kasei Corporation (Head Office: Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo; President: Hideki Kobori; hereinafter "Asahi Kasei") filed a patent infringement lawsuit with the Seoul Central District Court against W-SCOPE Corporation (Head Office: Shinagawa-ku Tokyo) and its subsidiary, W-SCOPE KOREA CO., LTD. (hereinafter "W-SCOPE Corporation, etc."), which manufacture and sell separators for lithium ion secondary battery, as joint defendants.

The lawsuit claims infringement of Asahi Kasei’s Korean patent (Patent No. 10-0977345, hereinafter "Asahi Kasei’s patent") relating to separator for lithium ion secondary battery, and seeks an injunction restraining W-SCOPE Corporation, etc., from manufacturing and selling their polyolefin microporous membrane products (including separator products for lithium ion secondary battery with product names such as "SB12D," "SB16D," "single-layer W-scope," etc.) in Korea, and compensation for damages.

After Asahi Kasei filed the lawsuit, on March 11, 2020, one of the defendants, W-SCOPE KOREA CO., LTD., filed a patent invalidation petition with the Korean Intellectual Property Trial and Appeal Board (hereinafter "Korean IPTAB") seeking the invalidation of Asahi Kasei’s patent. After sufficiently examining the arguments of both parties, on December 2, 2020, the Korean IPTAB issued a decision to dismiss the invalidation petition by W-SCOPE KOREA CO., LTD. and confirmed the validity of Asahi Kasei’s patent.

Asahi Kasei will pay close attention to issues concerning intellectual property rights, and if deemed necessary, take specific measures proactively against any infringement.

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