Davis Polk Defeats Samsung's Antitrust Claims Against SD Card Flash Memory Joint Venture

Davis Polk has again won a dismissal, this time with prejudice, of antitrust claims brought by Samsung against SD-3C, a joint venture of Panasonic, SanDisk and Toshiba. Samsung’s case, filed in federal court in San Francisco, alleged that the creation of the SD Card Flash Memory standard and related patent pooling and licensing activities had harmed consumers and violated the antitrust laws. In August of 2011, the Court dismissed Samsung's claims as time-barred, but allowed it to file a further amended complaint.

On January 3, 2012, Judge Jeffrey White of the U.S. District Court of the Northern District of California dismissed Samsung’s latest amended complaint with prejudice, holding that the statute of limitations barred Samsung's state and federal antitrust claims in their entirety. Although Samsung had attempted to overcome the statute of limitations by adding allegations based on recent royalty payments and an implied license amendment, the Court held that the new conduct alleged was simply "a continuation of the prior licensing behavior and does not serve to restart the statute of limitations period." The Court entered judgment in favor of defendants and against Samsung.

Davis Polk also represents SD-3C in connection with an ongoing related putative class action suit, brought by retail purchasers of SD Cards.

The Davis Polk litigation team included partners Christopher B. Hockett and Neal A. Potischman, associates Rajesh James and Samantha Harper Knox, and legal assistant Felicia Yu. Members of the Davis Polk team are based in the Menlo Park and New York offices.