LOS ANGELES, Nov. 6, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- A federal judge in California has ordered Australia-based Cochlear Corporation to pay more than $268 million to the Alfred E. Mann Foundation for Scientific Research (AMF) in a long-running patent dispute related to a hearing aid implant. U.S. Judge Fernando M. Olguin reinstated a jury award of $134 million and granted AMF's motion for enhanced damages due to a finding of willful infringement by Cochlear, doubling the jury's damages award.
The win is significant for AMF, a small nonprofit medical research organization, that convinced a jury -- and now the court -- that an injustice was done when Cochlear infringed on AMF's patents and reaped the benefits for more than 15 years while refusing to take a license.
"It was particularly satisfying that the judge recognized the blatant nature of Cochlear's infringement, and the extraordinary delays and extra expense caused by its litigation strategy, by not only reinstating the original jury verdict in its entirety, but by enhancing the damages by 100 percent," said John Petrovich, CEO of AMF.
In his November 4 order, Judge Olguin said, "In short, Cochlear's kitchen-sink approach throughout this case has been to raise arguments – many of which are unsupported or mischaracterize the record – that could have been raised earlier, with no effort to explain why they were not and why it is appropriate to raise them now."
Petrovich said, "We believe the jury and court came to a fair and reasonable conclusion. Should Cochlear choose to appeal, the awarded damages -- with interest -- will continue to climb and could easily far exceed $300 million. Because Cochlear's infringement was confirmed in an earlier appeal, the only question left to be answered is how much Cochlear owes for its infringement. With a just resolution in sight, we are prepared to see any appeal through to the end."
The victory comes on the heels of the recent closing of the initial public offering of AMF spinout company, Axonics Modulation Technologies (AXNX). Before the effective date of the IPO, AMF had an interest in Axonics that exceeded 10 percent fully diluted.
About the Alfred Mann Foundation
Founded in 1985 by serial healthcare entrepreneur Alfred E. Mann, the Alfred Mann Foundation for Scientific Research's (AMF) mission is to develop and commercialize innovative solutions for significant unmet or poorly met medical conditions. AMF has developed a myriad of medical devices that change the lives of patients across the globe, including the cochlear implant that enables deaf people to hear, several diabetes products, numerous products in the neuromodulation space for the eradication of pain, and recovery of function. AMF spin-out companies include Axonics Modulation Technologies, Inc.; Medallion Therapeutics; Monolythix, Inc. and Bioness, Inc. AMF is located in Santa Clarita, California.
SOURCE Alfred Mann Foundation