SAN DIEGO & SANTA CLARA, Calif.–Affymetrix, Inc. (NASDAQ:AFFX – News) and Illumina, Inc. (NASDAQ:ILMN – News) announced today that they have entered into a settlement agreement to resolve their patent litigation. Under the terms of the settlement, Illumina agreed, without admitting liability, to make a one-time payment to Affymetrix of $90 million. Affymetrix agreed to dismiss with prejudice all lawsuits it had brought against Illumina. Illumina agreed to dismiss with prejudice its counterclaims in the relevant lawsuits. In exchange for the payment, Affymetrix granted Illumina, its affiliates and its customers a perpetual covenant not to sue for making, using or selling any of Illumina’s current products, evolutions of those products and services related thereto. In addition, Affymetrix extended the covenant not to sue for four years for making, using or selling Illumina products or services that are based on future technology developments. The covenant not to sue covers all fields other than photolithography, the process by which Affymetrix manufactures its arrays and a field in which Illumina does not operate.
The settlement will resolve all litigations and payments resulting from lawsuits Affymetrix commenced against Illumina in United States District Court for the District of Delaware, in Regional Court in Düsseldorf (Germany), and in High Court of Justice, Chancery Division – Patents Court in London (United Kingdom). Payment of the settlement amount will be made once the litigations have been formally dismissed by the courts.
Illumina is a leading developer, manufacturer and marketer of next-generation life science tools and integrated systems for the large scale analysis of genetic variation and biological function. Using our proprietary technologies, we provide a comprehensive line of products and services that currently serve the sequencing, genotyping, and gene expression markets, and we expect to enter the market for molecular diagnostics. Our customers include leading genomic research centers, pharmaceutical companies, academic institutions, clinical research organizations and biotechnology companies. Our tools provide researchers around the world with the performance, throughput, cost effectiveness and flexibility necessary to perform the billions of genetic tests needed to extract valuable medical information from advances in genomics and proteomics. We believe this information will enable researchers to correlate genetic variation and biological function, which will enhance drug discovery and clinical research, allow diseases to be detected earlier and permit better choices of drugs for individual patients.
Affymetrix GeneChip® microarray technology is the industry-standard tool for analyzing complex genetic information. After inventing microarray technology in the late 1980s, Affymetrix scientists have been dedicated to developing innovative products that provide researchers with a more complete view of the genome. These products continue to accelerate genetic research and enable scientists to develop diagnostics and tailor treatments for individual patients by identifying and measuring the genetic information associated with complex diseases.
Today, Affymetrix technology is used by the world’s top pharmaceutical, diagnostic and biotechnology companies, as well as leading academic, government and not-for-profit research institutes. More than 1,600 systems have been shipped around the world and more than 10,500 peer-reviewed papers have been published using the technology.
Affymetrix is headquartered in Santa Clara, Calif., and has manufacturing facilities in Sacramento, Calif., and Singapore. The company has about 1,100 employees worldwide and maintains sales and distribution operations across Europe and Asia. For more information about Affymetrix, please visit: www.affymetrix.com.
Safe Harbor Statement for Illumina
“Safe Harbor” Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995: this release may contain forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. Among the important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in any forward-looking statements Illumina’s ability (i) to integrate effectively our recent acquisition of Solexa, Inc., (ii) to develop and commercialize further our BeadArrayTM, VeraCodeTM and Solexa® technologies and to deploy new gene expression and genotyping products and applications for our technology platforms, (iii) to manufacture robust micro arrays and Oligator® oligonucleotides, (iv) to integrate and scale our VeraCode technology, (v) to scale further oligo synthesis output and technology to satisfy market demand derived from our collaboration with Invitrogen, together with other factors detailed in our filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission including our recent filings on Forms 10-K and 10-Q or in information disclosed in public conference calls, the date and time of which are released beforehand. We disclaim any intent or obligation to update these forward-looking statements beyond the date of this release.
Safe Harbor Statement for Affymetrix
All statements in this press release that are not historical are “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act as amended, including statements regarding Affymetrix’ “expectations,” “beliefs,” “hopes,” “intentions,” “strategies” or the like. Such statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially for Affymetrix from those projected, including, but not limited to: risks and uncertainties associated with the agreement to settle outstanding litigation between Affymetrix and Illumina discussed in this press release; risk related to past and future acquisitions; risks of the company’s ability to achieve and sustain higher levels of revenue, higher gross margins and reduced operating expenses; uncertainties relating to technological approaches, manufacturing and product development; personnel retention; uncertainties related to cost and pricing of Affymetrix products; dependence on collaborative partners; uncertainties relating to sole-source suppliers; uncertainties relating to FDA and other regulatory approvals; competition; risks relating to intellectual property of others and the uncertainties of patent protection and litigation. These and other risk factors are discussed in Affymetrix’ Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2006, and other SEC reports, including its Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q for subsequent quarterly periods. Affymetrix expressly disclaims any obligation or undertaking to release publicly any updates or revisions to any forward-looking statements contained herein to reflect any change in Affymetrix’ expectations with regard thereto or any change in events, conditions or circumstances on which any such statements are based.
NOTE: Affymetrix, the Affymetrix logo and GeneChip® are registered trademarks owned or used by Affymetrix Inc.