Egenera, Inc. v. Cisco Systems, Inc. (D. Mass. 16-cv-11613).

  • December 13, 2021

Cisco has prevailed in a patent infringement lawsuit brought against it by Egenera.  Egenera had asserted that Cisco’s Unified Computing System infringed three patents on network computing, and had asked the jury for at least $371 million in damages.  The asserted patents specifically related to configuring, deploying and maintaining enterprise and application servers.

Earlier in the litigation, the court determined that one of the patents was directed to ineligible subject matter, and Egenera dismissed a second without prejudice following institution of inter partes review.  The sole remaining patent had been declared in valid after a three day bench trial for failure to list all of the inventors, a finding that was overturned on appeal in 2020. Egenera had petitioned to remove an inventor so that it could swear behind a prior art reference in an inter partes review, and had then sought to add the inventor back when Cisco asserted the patent should be invalidated for failure to name all inventors.  Judge Stearns had refused to re-add the inventor under judicial estoppel and deemed the patent invalid.  The Federal Circuit, however, reversed this decision, finding that claim construction (which occurred following the removal of the purported inventor) resulted in the need to readd the removed inventor, as the construction covered material that he had contributed, and that judicial estoppel did not bar the re-addition of the inventor.

The case subsequently went to trial on August 2nd, and the jury retired for deliberations on August 15th.  The jury returned the verdict about six hours after deliberations began.  The jury found no infringement, either literally or under the doctrine of equivalents, of either of the two asserted claims from the ‘430 patent.  Egenera can take some solace in the fact that the jury’s determination that Cisco had not proven either claim invalid. 

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