On January 31, 2007, a federal jury sitting in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California in San Jose, returned a unanimous verdict in favor of Fenwick & West client Asyst Technologies, Inc. The successful verdict is a result of the company's long-pending patent lawsuit against Emtrak, Inc., Jenoptik AG and others.
The verdict validated Asyst's patent no. 5,097,421, relating to its innovative Smart Traveler technology, and awarded Asyst damages of $74.7 million for infringement, including price erosion damages on an entire market value theory. Had this verdict come in 2006, it would have been the fifth largest patent verdict for that year, based on a report by Bloomberg News. "This is a terrific outcome for our client Asyst, which has steadfastly asserted the validity of this patent for almost a decade," stated Darryl Woo, who has represented Asyst since 1998, including through two appeals to the Federal Circuit. "We are delighted the jury was able to determine that Asyst's patent was valid and that the defendants had infringed Asyst's award-winning technology."
Steve Debenham, Vice President and General Counsel for Asyst, said, "We are very pleased with the jury's decision and the validation of our patented market-leading Smart Traveler technology. We are also very grateful for the extraordinary skill, commitment and tireless efforts over many years of our trial counsel at Fenwick & West to get this case to a jury and obtain such a clear victory."