Groupon Sues 'Once-Great' IBM Over Patent

Grow Your Business, Not Your Inbox

Stay informed and join our daily newsletter now!
Will be used in accordance with our Privacy Policy
Groupon Sues 'Once-Great' IBM Over Patent
Image credit: nattul | 360b | Shutterstock
2 min read
This story originally appeared on Reuters

The online marketplace Groupon Inc. has sued IBM Corp., accusing it of infringing a patent related to technology that helps businesses solicit customers based on the customers' locations at a given moment.

Groupon filed its lawsuit on Monday with the federal court in its hometown of Chicago, two months after IBM accused Groupon of patent infringement in a separate lawsuit.

"IBM is trying to shed its status as a dial-up-era dinosaur" by infringing the rights of "current" technology companies such as Groupon, according to Groupon spokesman Bill Roberts.

Doug Shelton, an IBM spokesman, said: "This counter suit is totally without merit." IBM's full name is International Business Machines Corp.

The latest lawsuit concerns IBM's WebSphere Commerce platform, which Groupon said lets merchants send messages to customers with GPS-enabled devices based on their real-time locations, and their use of social media including Facebook.

Groupon said the platform infringes a December 2010 patent, and that it deserves royalties based on the "billions of dollars" of revenue that Armonk, New York-based IBM has received through its infringement.

"IBM, a relic of once-great 20th Century technology firms, has now resorted to usurping the intellectual property of companies born this millennium," Groupon said in its lawsuit.

On March 2, IBM accused Groupon in a federal lawsuit in Delaware of infringing four patents, including two related to Prodigy, a late-1980s forerunner to the Internet.

"Over the past three years, IBM has attempted to conclude a fair and reasonable patent license agreement with Groupon, and we are disappointed that Groupon is seeking to divert attention from its patent infringement by suing," Shelton said.

The Chicago case is Groupon Inc v International Business Machines Corp, U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois, No. 16-05064. The Delaware case is International Business Machines Corp v Groupon Inc, U.S. District Court, District of Delaware, No. 16-00122.

(Reporting by Jonathan Stempel in New York; Editing by Andrew Hay)

More from Entrepreneur

Get heaping discounts to books you love delivered straight to your inbox. We’ll feature a different book each week and share exclusive deals you won’t find anywhere else.
Jumpstart Your Business. Entrepreneur Insider is your all-access pass to the skills, experts, and network you need to get your business off the ground—or take it to the next level.
Create your business plan in half the time with twice the impact using Entrepreneur's BIZ PLANNING PLUS powered by LivePlan. Try risk free for 60 days.

Latest on Entrepreneur

Entrepreneur Media, Inc. values your privacy. In order to understand how people use our site generally, and to create more valuable experiences for you, we may collect data about your use of this site (both directly and through our partners). By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to the use of that data. For more information on our data policies, please visit our Privacy Policy.