Motorola and Huawei settle legal disputes

Huawei, fearing that trade secrets might be revealed, had been seeking to block Motorola's sale of its wireless equipment business to Nokia Siemens.

Lance Whitney Contributing Writer
Lance Whitney is a freelance technology writer and trainer and a former IT professional. He's written for Time, CNET, PCMag, and several other publications. He's the author of two tech books--one on Windows and another on LinkedIn.
Lance Whitney
2 min read

Motorola and Huawei Technologies have patched up their legal differences in disputes over the potential sharing of trade secrets.

The companies announced today that they've entered into an agreement to settle all litigation in two separate legal matters, pending certain conditions.

China-based Huawei has agreed to withdraw its lawsuit against Motorola and Nokia Siemens Networks. The suit, filed in January, sought to block Motorola's sale of its wireless equipment business to Nokia Siemens on the grounds that Motorola could reveal certain Huawei trade secrets to Nokia Siemens.

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In return for settling the suit, Huawei will received an undisclosed amount of money from Motorola to transfer its commercial agreements with Huawei. The agreement also allows Nokia to actually use certain confidential information revealed to Motorola about Huawei in order to manage the networks that it set up around the world using Huawei technology.

The $1.2 billion deal that would see Motorola's wireless networks and employees transferred to Nokia triggered the lawsuit by Huawei. Since Motorola has sold Huawei's wireless equipment for years, its employees are versed in Huawei's products and technology. Seeing Nokia Siemens as a competitor, Huawei alleged in its suit that any Motorola workers who moved over to Nokia could reveal certain trade secrets.

On its end, Motorola has agreed to dismiss a claim against Huawei in a legal action in which Motorola sued Huawei for allegedly stealing trade secrets as part of a corporate espionage case. The matter also involved a networking company called Lemko, with which Huawei had a reseller agreement. In 2008, Motorola sued five former employees for sharing information with Lemko.

"We regret that these disputes have occurred between our two companies," Greg Brown, president and CEO of Motorola Solutions, said in a statement. "Motorola Solutions values the long-standing relationship we have had with Huawei. After reviewing the facts, we decided to resolve these matters and return to our traditional relationship of confidence and trust. I am pleased that we can again focus on having a cooperative and productive relationship."