AUSTIN, Texas -- Nov 22, 2005 -- SigmaTel Inc. (NASDAQ:SGTL), a leader in mixed-signal multimedia semiconductors, today announced the establishment of a European Intellectual Property (IP) protection and licensing strategy. Similar to SigmaTel's ongoing IP strategy in the United States, the European licensing program will initially focus on the protection and enforcement of 19 patents related to power management, multimedia applications and MP3 hardware and software. The European licensing program will encompass current SigmaTel customers, who have an implied license when they purchase SigmaTel products, as well as other MP3 manufactures and MP3 semiconductor developers who may include SigmaTel intellectual property in their product designs.
"SigmaTel is very protective of its growing IP portfolio, and the company believes that many of the MP3 semiconductors and MP3 players developed and shipped to Europe are infringing its intellectual property," said Ron Edgerton, president and CEO of SigmaTel. "The company's new European IP protection program and licensing strategy provides SigmaTel a reasonable method to protect its customers' investments in SigmaTel's technology."
SigmaTel protects its innovations by filing numerous patent applications and has added intellectual property via recent acquisitions, complementing its internally developed intellectual property holdings, which has resulted in a significant patent portfolio in Europe. The company believes its patent portfolio is applicable to MP3 silicon manufacturers and MP3 player manufacturers who import products to European countries.
In implementing a licensing strategy, SigmaTel hopes to ensure that European retailers do not have to remove infringing products from store shelves and hopes to protect suppliers, such as NAND flash suppliers, from not being paid if SigmaTel ultimately has to resort to legal action to stop the sale of unlicensed MP3 players not powered by SigmaTel. SigmaTel intends to attempt in all cases to first employ its licensing strategy, but will not hesitate to resort to legal action if MP3 player or silicon manufacturers or importers decline to participate in SigmaTel's licensing program.
With more than 60% of MP3 players using SigmaTel technology worldwide, the company's continued success is based in large part on protecting its intellectual property and innovating new technologies. For more information on SigmaTel and specifics regarding its patent portfolio, please visit www.sigmatel.com.
SigmaTel Inc. a fabless semiconductor company headquartered in Austin, Texas, designs, develops, and markets proprietary, analog intensive, mixed-signal ICs for a variety of digital multimedia products in the consumer electronics and computing markets, including portable compressed audio players, such as MP3 players, notebook and desktop PCs, digital video cameras, multi-function peripheral products, digital televisions, and set-top boxes. SigmaTel provides complete, system-level solutions that include highly integrated ICs, customizable firmware and software, software development tools, reference designs, and applications support. The Company's focus is on providing system-level solutions that enable customers to rapidly introduce and offer electronic products that are small, light-weight, power-efficient, reliable, and cost-effective. SigmaTel is ISO 9001:2000 certified and is committed to providing customers with high-performance, quality products along with superior customer service.