- Grant of key Japanese patent initiates global licensing program
potentially worth millions
- Patented circuit is essential component for large screen color
plasma displays - a market estimated to reach $4.7 billion in 2004,
according to Nomura Research Institute, Ltd.
FAIRFIELD, Conn., March 3 /PRNewswire/ -- Sales of plasma display panels
(PDPs), the super-thin screens that are the juice behind the flat-panel
television and video screen revolution, are on their way up, and one company,
together with its technology partners, stands to benefit no matter who the
Competitive Technologies, Inc. (Amex: CTT), a global leader in licensing
and commercializing new technologies, owns the exclusive right to license the
patents for a critical energy circuit used in PDPs. The "energy recovery
sustain circuit" reduces power dissipation in screens of 42-inches in diagonal
size and larger by more than 100 watts. It also reduces electromagnetic
radiation, which could otherwise interfere with radio and television signals.
CTT early on began filing for -- and receiving -- patent protection in key
countries worldwide for the PDP energy circuit. The recent grant of a patent
in Japan is the final piece in CTT's licensing strategy. "We're moving
quickly on this and already have one licensing agreement in place with a major
manufacturer. We expect to pursue negotiations with several other
manufacturers shortly," said CTT President Frank R. McPike. "Revenues
retained for our company from this licensing program should be significant and
will grow with the market," he added.
CTT now holds patents for this key enabling circuit in eight countries
including: the United States, Belgium, Canada, France, Germany, Great Britain,
Japan and the Netherlands. The addition of patent coverage in Japan expands
CTT's rights to this technology in nearly all countries that account for
production of PDPs.
"The energy recovery sustain circuit is essential for all the world's
42-inch diagonal and larger color plasma display products, and it is also used
in smaller panels, e.g., 21-inch diagonal," said Shigeo Mikoshiba, professor
at the University of Electro-Communications and associate editor of the
Journal of Society for Information Display. "This circuit is one of the
necessary advances that will allow plasma displays to fulfill the dream of
practical hang-on-the-wall television."
The PDP Market
The PDP market is growing rapidly as consumers and leading commercial
users adopt the technology for a variety of applications. According to Nomura
Research Institute, Ltd., flat PDPs' sales of all sizes are estimated at
$200 million for 1998, but are expected to grow by $4.5 billion to an
estimated $4.7 billion in 2004 worldwide.
PDP televisions are growing in popularity because they are practically
wafer-thin -- just three to four inches thick -- and because they improve
dramatically upon current picture tube technology, since they can be viewed
without distortion from an eye-popping wide 160-degree angle of view and
provide extraordinary picture, color and contrast.
According to Electronics Weekly, many manufacturers of PDPs are planning
to significantly increase production of the flat panel units in the coming
years. Among the leading PDP manufacturers are Fujitsu, LG Electronics, NEC,
Philips, Pioneer and Sharp.
Models now in production and available to consumers feature screens from
21 inches to 60 inches in diagonal measure. Most PDPs now in manufacture are
also compatible with high-definition television signal standards.
About Competitive Technologies, Inc.
Competitive Technologies is a global leader in the identification,
development and commercialization of innovative technologies in life sciences,
physical sciences and digital technologies. Competitive Technologies'
specialized expertise and experience make it a valuable partner for companies
of all sizes engaged in technology commercialization. CTT has evaluated more
than 25,000 technologies and has been responsible for closing hundreds of
Important CTT clients and licensees include: SONY, Lucent Technologies,
Matsushita Electrical and Ribozyme Pharmaceuticals, Inc., among others.
Competitive Technologies, Inc. is based in Fairfield, Conn., with affiliates
in Osaka, Japan and London, England.
Statements about the Company's future expectations, including development
and regulatory plans, and all other statements in this document other than
historical facts are "forward-looking statements' with the meaning of
applicable Federal Securities laws and are not guarantees of future
performance. These statements involved risks and uncertainties related to the
market acceptance of and competition for the Company's licensed technologies
and other risks and uncertainties inherent in CTT's business, including those
set forth in Item I of the Company's Form 10-K for the year ended July 31,
1998, and other factors that may also be described in CTT's filings with the
SEC, and are subject to change at any time. The Company's actual results
could differ materially from these forward-looking statements.
SOURCE Competitive Technologies, Inc.
/CONTACT: Michelle Pujadas of Ketchum, 412-456-3857, for Competitive
Technologies; or Frank R. McPike of Competitive Technologies, 203-255-6044/
/Web site: http://www.cti.lehigh.edu/
CO: Competitive Technologies, Inc.
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