Huawei wins preliminary injunction in Motorola lawsuit

Chinese network equipment maker Huawei has won a preliminary injunction from a U.S. court, preventing Motorola Solutions from carrying out the transfer of trade secrets to Nokia Siemens Networks.

The court order, made on Tuesday, threatens to complicate a US$1.2 billion deal Nokia Siemens Networks made to acquire Motorola’s telecommunication equipment network business.

Last month, Huawei filed a lawsuit accusing Motorola of planning to give away the Chinese company’s intellectual property as part of its deal with Nokia Siemens Networks.

In the past, Motorola had relied on Huawei to develop and design its cellular communication networks, purchasing equipment worth $878 million from the Chinese company. Through those past agreements, Huawei had provided confidential information to Motorola, which the company was obligated to protect.

The court found that Huawei would “suffer irreparable competitive harm” if the trade secrets were given to Nokia Siemens Networks. The preliminary injunction lasts pending a decision on the case or further court order.

Huawei has no interest in stopping the transaction between Motorola and Nokia Siemens, it said. “We will, however, do whatever is required to protect the product of our company’s many years of innovation,” it said.

Motorola and Nokia Siemens Networks could not be reached for immediate comment.

The court order represents a small win for Huawei following its recent struggles in the U.S. to complete its own acquisition of intellectual property. Last week, Huawei said it would follow the recommendation of a U.S. government panel to divest from a business deal that had drawn national security concerns.

In May, Huawei had paid $2 million to buy intellectual property from 3Leaf Systems, a U.S. startup that specializes in grouping servers to build more powerful mainframe computers. The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), however, reviewed the deal and asked Huawei to reverse it.

Huawei’s recent troubles stem from some U.S. government officials’ belief that the company has links to the Chinese military. Huawei denies any such ties, insisting it wants to be transparent.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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