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Microsoft and Kenwood Enter Into Broad Patent Licensing Agreement to Foster Innovation and Collaboration


Microsoft Corp. and Kenwood Corp. have signed a patent cross-license agreement to further the development of each company’s current and future product lines, which will expand technological innovation and enhance the overall customer and consumer experience.

The agreement, recently signed by representatives of both companies at Microsoft’s headquarters in Redmond, Wash., expands the relationship between Kenwood and Microsoft to promote the exchange of information and the incorporation of patented technologies in car navigation systems and other consumer electronics products.

“This agreement is an example of how industry leaders can use intellectual property licensing as a means of collaboration to foster innovation that will benefit the customer, consumer and the overall IT ecosystem,” said Horacio Gutierrez, vice president of Intellectual Property and Licensing at Microsoft. “We are proud of the quality of our broad, global patent portfolio and look forward to continuing to work with Kenwood and other industry leaders to develop new and exciting technologies through our licensing program.”

“This agreement expands the scope of collaborative relations between the two parties,” said Kazuo Ishiguro, vice president of Intellectual Property at Kenwood. “We expect this will accelerate product development by sharing the technologies that Microsoft and Kenwood have developed. It also provides an environment for our customers to utilize the products and services provided by both companies.”

While the specific financial terms of the agreement are confidential, the parties indicated that Kenwood is making a cash payment to Microsoft for the license to Microsoft® patents.

Microsoft’s Commitment to Licensing Technology

This licensing agreement is another example of the important role intellectual property (IP) plays in ensuring a healthy and vibrant IT ecosystem. Since Microsoft launched its IP licensing program in December 2003, the company has entered into more than 200 licensing agreements and continues to develop programs that make it possible for customers, partners and competitors to access its IP portfolio. The program was developed to open up access to Microsoft’s significant research and development investments and its growing, broad patent and IP portfolio. In the past year, Microsoft has entered into similar agreements with Fuji Xerox Co. Ltd., LG Electronics, NEC Corp, Nortel Networks, Novell Inc., Samsung and Seiko Epson Corp.


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