Following a three-year global patent dispute over robotic warehousing technology, Ocado Group and AutoStore have settled all pending litigation. European IP firm Powell Gilbert co-ordinated the litigation globally on behalf of Ocado.
The two parties agreed a complete settlement of all claims in the dispute. AutoStore will pay £200 million to Ocado in instalments over two years, and the parties agreed mutually beneficial global cross-licensing terms for their pre-2020 patents.
AutoStore is not permitted to make or use a single-space cavity robot in any jurisdiction where Ocado has patent protection.
AutoStore first brought proceedings against Ocado in 2020 in the UK and US alleging infringement of several of its robotic warehousing patents.
In March of this year the UK High Court issued its judgment in the UK case, finding in favour of Ocado on all counts. The US ITC also found for Ocado on all counts.
Powell Gilbert co-ordinated Ocado’s global litigation strategy and acted on its behalf in the UK case.
In addition, together with local counsel, Powell Gilbert represented Ocado in three pending cases Ocado had brought in the new Unified Patent Court (UPC) through the firm’s Dublin office. Ocado also had cases pending against AutoStore in the US and Germany.
The partners acting on the matter were Simon Ayrton, Zöe Butler, Tom Oliver, Joel Coles and Tess Waldron.
Simon Ayrton, the Partner leading the team at PG, commented:
“This settlement, welcomed by both parties, represents a constructive and collaborative approach which will allow them to continue developing their respective technologies in what is a commercially important and highly innovative field.
“We are extremely grateful to the Ocado IP team, as well as to our counsel partners in the US and Europe, for their work over the past three years, both in and out of court, which has helped to deliver this landmark result.”