Akamai Had Hoped for $100M-Plus Award

Akamai (AKAM) is pleased with its court victory over Limelight Networks (LLNW), but had hoped to be awarded at least $100 million in damages.

Xconomy has some additional details about Friday's jury verdict that awarded Akamai (AKAM) $45 million in damages from Limelight Networks (LLNW) in a patent dispute. The jury found that Limelight's content delivery technology infringed on Akamai patent 6,108,703, known in the industry as the "703" patent. Xconomy reports that the verdict "was not the huge win Akamai hoped it would be" since additional elements of the company's case against Limelight had been thrown out weeks earlier. An excerpt:

Akamai had hoped for a much larger damage award, according to (Akamai spokesman Jeff) Young. "I can't really comment on the specific amount, but we believe the evidence showed at least a nine-figure damage number."

Nine figures is $100 million. Instead, the jury found damages to Akamai of $45.5 million, including $40.1 million for profits lost as a result of Limelight's infringement, a royalty of $1.4 million, and a further $4 million to compensate Akamai for price erosion caused by competition from Limelight. Xconomy has obtained the jury form that itemizes the verdict, and posted it online.


Limelight has said it will appeal the verdict, and Dan Rayburn writes that if Limelight is not acquired, it may seek to rally other CDN providers behind its appeal, asserting that they have a vested interest in contesting Akamai's patent claims.

At the core of the 703 patent is the idea that Akamai has essentially patented all forms of delivering content on the web. Based on the ruling today, the court is basically saying that any content publisher that has a website with ANY embedded object (not just video) that is not delivered under the control of the content producer is infringing on the 703 patent. ...
Don't be surprised if Limelight rallies other CDNs to the patent fight under the belief that the 703 patent is too broad and is essentially patenting all content delivery on the Internet.

The Akamai-Limelight patent case is also being discussed on Slashdot.