Signify Sues Keystone Technologies

Signify Initiates Patent Infringement Lawsuit Against Keystone Technologies

Like most months, May was a busy period for IP litigation in our industry. In an article by Laser Focus World, it was noted that there were 12 lighting and light source IP activities during the month of May. Only two involved Signify. The first case was against Menard, which we covered earlier, and now Signify sues Keystone Technologies.

On 31 May, Signify Holding B.V. initiated a patent infringement lawsuit against Keystone Technologies, LLC, in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia (Case No. 1:24-cv-02401-LMM).

The Genesis of the Dispute

The legal confrontation between Signify and Keystone can be traced back to 2019 when Signify first contacted Keystone regarding potential patent infringements. Over the next few years, Signify continued to engage with Keystone, attempting to resolve the matter. However, no agreement was reached, leading Signify to file a formal complaint.

The suit mentions Keystone’s 14 distribution centers and their ability to deliver anywhere in the United States within 48 hours. While your humble editor was aware of Keystone’s tremendous growth, I did not realize they had 14 distribution centers. Keystone has become one of the largest OEMs in the US, making it curious why Signify waited this long to pursue legal action.

The Complaint

Signify’s complaint, filed on 31 May 2024, accuses Keystone of infringing multiple patents related to LED lighting technology. The suit was filed in the Northern District of Georgia, which is also curious. Perhaps it is because of Cooper’s location in Peachtree City. The suit lists various Cooper projects such as the Mercedes Benz Stadium in Atlanta.

I assume Signify is appealing to the judge’s empathy as they highlight their goodwill efforts, including their support of the Signify Foundation. They stated, “Since its inception in 2017, the Signify Foundation has made a difference in nearly 10 million lives across 19 countries.”

The Patents-in-Suit

The lawsuit involves the following eight U.S. patents held by Signify:

  1. U.S. Patent No. 8,063,577 – “Method and a Driver Circuit for LED Operation”
  2. U.S. Patent No. 8,070,328 – “LED Downlight”
  3. U.S. Patent No. 8,272,756 – “LED-Based Lighting System and Method”
  4. U.S. Patent No. 9,709,253 – “Light Emitting Diode Recessed Light Fixture”
  5. U.S. Patent No. 9,351,357 – “Light Emitting Diode Lamp and Driver”
  6. U.S. Patent No. 10,117,300 – “Configurable Lighting System”
  7. U.S. Patent No. 10,506,682 – “Configurable Lighting System”
  8. U.S. Patent No. 9,820,350 – “Configurable Lighting System”

These patents cover a range of technologies, from LED driver circuits to downlights and configurable lighting systems.

Specific Allegations

Signify alleges that Keystone has been knowingly infringing its patents by manufacturing, using, offering for sale, selling, and importing products that incorporate the patented technologies. The complaint details how Keystone’s products, such as the XFIT Area Light, Advanta Downlight, HID Replacement LED Lamps, Aviva Retrofit Downlights, SmartDrive LED Lamps, and Circa LED Slim Wafer Downlights, infringe upon the specified patents.

Examples of Infringement

  1. XFIT Area Light: Allegedly infringes U.S. Patent No. 8,063,577, which relates to a driver circuit for LED operation.
  2. Advanta Downlight: Allegedly infringes U.S. Patent Nos. 8,070,328, 10,506,682, and 10,117,300, which cover various aspects of LED downlight and configurable lighting systems.
  3. HID Replacement LED Lamps: Allegedly infringe U.S. Patent No. 8,272,756, which pertains to LED-based lighting systems.
  4. Aviva Retrofit Downlights: Allegedly infringe U.S. Patent Nos. 9,709,253 and 10,117,300, related to LED recessed light fixtures and configurable lighting systems.
  5. SmartDrive LED Lamps: Allegedly infringe U.S. Patent No. 9,351,357, covering LED lamp and driver technologies.
  6. Circa LED Slim Wafer Downlights: Allegedly infringe U.S. Patent No. 9,820,350, which concerns configurable lighting systems.

Legal Remedies Sought

Signify seeks several remedies, including:

  • A permanent injunction to prevent Keystone from further infringing the patents.
  • An award of damages to compensate for the infringement, including lost profits and reasonable royalties.
  • Enhanced damages for willful infringement.
  • Recovery of litigation costs and attorneys’ fees due to the exceptional nature of the case.

I have reached out to Keystone for a comment and did not hear back. I discussed the case with Attorney Henriks Villumsen of the Villumsen Lawfirm and believes the case will settle by year-end.  I hope he is right.

Read the suit below.

Signify vs. Keystone