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SK Innovation Lashing Back at LG Chem over Trade Secret Infringement Allegations
U.S. ITC Launches Probe into Allegations Against SK Innovation
SK Innovation Lashing Back at LG Chem over Trade Secret Infringement Allegations
  • By Jung Min-hee
  • June 3, 2019, 09:47
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An SK Innovation engineer at the company’s battery plant in Seosan, Korea, checks on a battery cell.

SK Innovation is preparing various countermeasures, including filing a counter-suit, to strike back against LG Chem, which has filed a suit against it in the U.S. claiming that SK Innovation has infringed upon its trade secrets.

“We are responding to the lawsuit by doing everything we can, including filing a counter-suit, to protect ourselves in five areas -- customers, employees, business value, Korea’s battery ecosystem and national interests,” SK Innovation said in a statement on June 2. SK Innovation was reported to be preparing a lawsuit against LG Chem for defamation and damage caused by a delay in business projects.

"We have already emphasized several times that we will respond by strong means, such as legal measures, unless LG Chem stops wrongfully accusing us without any grounds," SK Innovation said in the statement. "We cannot reveal what kind of legal measures we will take now. But we will let you know about it before long," SK Innovation added, hinting that the company would start legal responses in the near future.

SK Innovation also demanded that LG Chem withdraw its lawsuit, saying, "We request once again that LG Chem, our rival company, stop blaming our normal and legitimate business activities in the battery business and make efforts for the benefit of both companies and our country, Korea."

On the other hand, LG Chem claimed that SK Innovation stole technologies from it by poaching 76 core personnel from all areas in its battery business including R&D, production and quality control for two years from 2017. On April 30, LG Chem requested the United States International Trade Commission (U.S. ITC) and the federal court in the U.S. state of Delaware to ban imports and sales of SK Innovation batteries for electric vehicles in America, claiming that SK Innovation infringed upon its trade secrets. The ITC launched its investigation into the matter on May 29 (local time).