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Split Decision On IGT/Bally Lawsuit

A federal district court has issued summary judgment rulings dismissing most of the patent infringement claims filed by International Game Technology against rival Bally Technologies, although the judge did validate two claims in the lawsuit.

IGT’s suit against Bally claimed that Bally’s Power Promotions, Power Bank and Power Winners online slot system software, which adds player rewards through the SDS/CMP online accounting and player tracking system, infringed on several IGT patents. The judge’s ruling rejects those claims.

The court, though, also found that Bally’s ACSC Power Winners and ACSC Power Rewards products do infringe two of the patents IGT asserted in the lawsuit.

“For the two products partially in question, the company has undertaken technical changes to ensure non-infringement,” said Ramesh Srinivasan, executive vice president of Bally Systems. “The revenues derived from these products to date are immaterial to Bally’s financial position.”

In the litigation, IGT originally claimed Bally’s products infringed some 200 patent claims, but following patent re-examination proceedings and case-related actions, all but eight of the claims were withdrawn.

IGT officials are pleased with the split decision. “We are pleased that the court has affirmed the validity of our patents and their infringement,” said IGT CEO Patti Hart in a statement. “We believe strongly in the United States patent system and the need to protect our intellectual property and respect the valid intellectual property rights of others.”