Google Inc (GOOG) and Cisco Systems, Inc. (CSCO) have entered a cross-licensing patent deal

Posted Feb 4, 2014

Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) and Cisco Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ:CSCO) today announced a long-term agreement where they will license patents from each other to curb patent lawsuits from shell companies and trolls. Google and Cisco did not say how many patents are involved in this deal.

“Our agreement with Cisco will reduce the potential for litigation, letting us focus instead on building great new products,” stated Allen Lo, Google’s Deputy General Counsel for Patents. “We’re pleased to enter into this cross-license, and we welcome discussions with any company interested in a similar arrangement.”

Google has been ramping up their patent portfolio to protect themselves against trolls. Google recently signed a 10-year patent deal with Samsung and obtained thousands of patents when acquiring Motorola Mobility. Google retained many of the patents after selling Motorola to Lenovo.

“In today’s overly-litigious environment, cross-licensing is an effective way for technology companies to work together and help prevent unnecessary patent lawsuits,” added Dan Lang, Cisco’s Vice President of Intellectual Property. “This agreement is an important step in promoting innovation and assuring freedom of operation.”

Cisco had to fight several shell companies in the last few years. One of the most high-profile cases is when Cisco filed federal racketeering charges against lawyers that demanded money from 8,000 hotels and coffee shops for offering free WiFi.

[Source: Cisco Newsroom]