Sinovel and AMSC reach settlement

UNITED STATES: Sinovel and AMSC have reached a settlement agreement worth $57.5 million ahead of the Chinese firm being sentenced for stealing trade secrets.

Sinovel used stolen AMSC software in its 1.5MW turbines
Sinovel used stolen AMSC software in its 1.5MW turbines

Sinovel will pay the agreed sum in two instalments: $32.5 million by 5 July 2018, and a second payment of $25 million within ten months after the US District Court delivers its first sentence.

Its former chairman Wenyuan Wei — also a current Sinovel stakeholder — has delivered a letter of guarantee to AMSC for the second instalment should the manufacturer fail to pay on time.

In addition, the American company has granted Sinovel a non-exclusive license for certain AMSC intellectual property to be used in its doubly-fed wind turbines. This agreement will be terminated should Sinovel or its guarantor fail to pay.

The two companies have also agreed to submit withdrawal applications terminating legal proceedings between them in regional courts in Sinovel’s native China, which had previously rejected AMSC’s copyright infringement claim while the case was pursued in the US.

They will also withdraw applications at the Beijing Arbitration Commission.

Sinovel was convicted in January of stealing proprietary turbine technology from AMSC to use in its own turbines.  Sentencing is expected on 6 July.

Following the settlement agreement, AMSC president and CEO Daniel McGahn, said: "We valued the past cooperation between Sinovel and AMSC, which was heralded as the example of Sino-US cooperation in the new energy area.

"Through Sinovel and AMSC’s joint efforts, we have signed a settlement agreement to resolve the previous disputes in a constructive manner that we believe will enable us to move on with our respective businesses."

Sinovel poached a former chief engineer at AMSC-subsidiary AMSC Windtec GmbH, Dejan Karabesevic, and senior management figures at the Chinese manufacturer also convinced him to secretly download source code to be copied into turbine software.

Following the theft, AMSC suffered severe financial hardship, losing more than $1 billion in shareholder equity and cut nearly 700 jobs from its global workforce.

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles
and free email bulletins.

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in