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Friday, November 15, 2002
Cree, Nichia reach patent cross license agreement

Cree Inc and Nichia Corp announced that they have entered into a patent cross license agreement and settlement of litigation between the companies concerning gallium nitride-based optoelectronic technology. The agreement will end all litigation between the companies and should allow the companies to focus more resources on developing technology for next generation high brightness LEDs, laser diodes and LED based lighting.

Noboru Tazaki, senior managing director and division chief of the Optoelectronics Products Division of Nichia Corp, said, "This cross license and settlement of litigation with Cree Inc is almost the final step of our aggressive plan of licensing and settlement of patent issues for this year. This is also a good time for both companies to focus on the development and improvements in technology, production and market development."

Chuck Swoboda, Cree's president and CEO, also noted, "This settlement represents an important step forward for Cree, Nichia, and the entire nitride optoelectronic industry. I believe this agreement is a recognition of the leadership that Nichia and Cree have demonstrated in both technology and intellectual property and should allow us to focus more of our resources on developing products to support the growing demand for blue, green and white LEDs, as well as UV and violet laser diodes."

Cree also reported that its revenue and earnings targets for the current quarter remain unchanged from those previously announced. As a result of this settlement, Cree targets a significant reduction in expenses due to a reduction in legal costs beginning in the third fiscal quarter.

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