ICC comments on commitments offered to the European Commission by Samsung Electronics on the use of standard essential patents (SEP)
ICC supports a competition policy that fosters innovation and robust intellectual property protection and appreciates the opportunity to comment on the draft commitments offered by Samsung Electronics in the above-mentioned matter.
ICC is a worldwide business organization that unites many thousands of companies. Among its members are many holders of intellectual property, as well as users of technology. While ICC does not generally comment on individual cases and will refrain from commenting on the merits of the European Commission’s investigation at hand, or Samsung’s licensing practices, it notes that the proposed commitments, once declared binding on Samsung, may have a significant impact on how intellectual property license agreements are negotiated and licensing terms are set and on the role of antitrust regulation in technology transfer for de facto or de jure standardized technologies. As a consequence, in their final form, the commitments in the investigation at hand may have an impact on the innovation incentives of intellectual property holders and licensees that extends far beyond the specific subject matter of the investigation that gave rise to the commitments.
ICC favors effective mechanisms that help companies to efficiently license intellectual property rights, whether or not the rights at issue can be qualified as standard essential or not, and notes that undue delay caused by patent holders or potential licensees may frustrate the negotiation and adjudication process.
ICC will first submit a number of general observations. Those observations are followed by a number of specific comments.