Paice LLC and The Abell Foundation Win $28.9 Million Verdict in Patent Infringement Lawsuit Against Hyundai Motor Co. and Kia Motors Corp.
A Baltimore jury returned a verdict of $28,915,600 against Hyundai Motor Co. and Kia Motors Corp. in a patent infringement case in favor of Paice LLC, a small hybrid vehicle technology company, and The Abell Foundation. In addition to finding infringement and validity with respect to the Paice patents, the jury found that Hyundai and Kia willfully infringed those patents.
The jury deliberated for one day following an eight-day trial in the U.S. District Court case presided over by the Honorable Judge Marvin J. Garbis. The verdict essentially represents a payment of $200 for each infringing hybrid vehicle sold by Hyundai and Kia at issue in the case through June 30, 2015.
Paice, a pioneer in hybrid electric vehicle technology, and The Abell Foundation brought the patent infringement lawsuit against Hyundai and Kia in February. Paice claimed that the South Korean automakers were selling hybrid vehicles, specifically the Hyundai Sonata Hybrid and Kia Optima Hybrid, which infringed five U.S. patents owned by Paice and The Abell Foundation.
"We are very gratified by the jury's verdict and thank them for their hard work and dedication as they sorted through this complex matter," said Frances Keenan, chair of the Paice board of directors. "We are pleased to have Dr. Severinsky's foundational technology recognized in the verdict and finding of willful infringement."
Paice's hybrid vehicle technology is well known. An independent analysis of 58,000 hybrid vehicle patents found that Paice owns the most dominant hybrid vehicle patent in the world due to its fundamental importance in the development of hybrid vehicles. Paice currently owns four of the Top 10 most influential hybrid vehicle patents in the world – more than Toyota, Ford and Honda combined.
Paice has previously licensed its hybrid technology to Toyota (which accounts for about 65% of all hybrid vehicle sales in the United States) and Ford. Toyota secured a global license for all Paice technology in 2010; Ford has a licensing agreement that applied only to Paice's first patent which has now expired.
About Paice LLC
Paice has been at the forefront of hybrid technology for more than 20 years. Led by an innovative and experienced team of automotive veterans, Paice made its mark by discovering new ways to maximize fuel efficiency and reduce harmful emissions without sacrificing driving performance.
The company was founded in 1992 by Dr. Alex Severinsky. By developing hybrid technology before major automakers began to focus on the potential advantages associated with electrification of the powertrain, Paice's technology laid the foundation for today's hybrid vehicles.
Today, the company has 29 U.S. and foreign patents related to hybrid vehicle technology.
About The Abell Foundation
The Abell Foundation, established in 1953, is a Baltimore-based charitable organization that has contributed more than $263 million to support the community. With assets of more than $350 million, it is the largest private foundation serving Maryland exclusively.
The foundation provides gifts primarily to educational institutions and human services organizations dealing with reducing poverty in Baltimore. Its work has expanded to include research and publications on important policy issues and direct investments in early stage companies that offer significant social and economic benefits to the city.