Spines Stiffen as Price Tags Drop on Patent Spats

October 30, 2015

Fenwick patent litigation chair Michael Sacksteder spoke to The Recorder about client Supercell Oy’s recent patent litigation wins, victories that represent cheaper, more efficient options companies facing patent litigation now possess under the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Alice v. CLS Bank.

"The options are not just a binary 'fight or give up' anymore," said Sacksteder, who represented the successful mobile gaming startup in two patent infringement suits it faced last year. "You're committing to something that's potentially useful, but you are not committing to the whole enchilada," he said.

Rather than enter into a long, expensive litigation battle, Supercell – creator of the popular "Clash of Clans" game – brought an early motion under Section 101 of the Patent Act. Both cases were over in less than a year, and Supercell has received no further U.S. patent suits.

"We'd rather put our feet on the ground and fight this now rather than face multiple cases [in the future],” Supercell General Counsel Markku Ignatius told The Recorder

Companies like Supercell can now take a stand against frivolous patent suits without sacrificing millions of dollars with early patent eligibility resolution in court becoming commonplace, as well as the possibility of inter partes review at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

The full article is available through The Recorder website (subscription required). Sacksteder also spoke with The Recorder about Fenwick’s early win for Supercell in August.