Nordex Told Assets It's to Buy From Acciona Targeted in Lawsuitby and
Inneo Torres is suing Acciona for criminal copyright issue
Complaint relates to intellectual property on wind towers
Nordex SE, Germany’s largest wind turbine maker, has been notified that part of the 785 million euros ($837 million) in assets it plans to buy from Acciona SA are the target of a criminal complaint in Spain.
Nordex last month received a letter from Madrid-based Inneo Torres SL, a Spanish maker of concrete towers for wind energy projects, saying it’s suing Acciona for intellectual copyright theft, according to a copy of the letter dated Oct. 29 and seen by Bloomberg.
A judge in Madrid is studying whether the lawsuit has merit, and the value of the possible damages is yet to be determined. The suit was filed in Sept. 2014 in the National Court in Madrid.
Inneo Torres claims that Acciona breached contracts the two had and stole intellectual property relating to how to make towers for wind turbines, according to a copy of the lawsuit. While Acciona acquired of some patents relating to towers when it bought a unit of Inneo, it chose not to exercise an option that would have given it ownership of all of the technology, the complaint says.
According to the lawsuit, Acciona then went on to make use of all the patents and stopped paying Inneo. Officials for Nordex, Acciona and Inneo Torres all declined to comment about the complaint when contacted by phone.
Acciona in October agreed to sell its wind-turbine manufacturing business to Nordex for 785 million euros ($880 million) in stock, which will make the Spanish company the biggest shareholder of the German manufacturer. The deal is due to be complete in 2016, subject to approvals and would solidify the position of Nordex against bigger competitors such as Vestas Wind Systems A/S and Siemens AG.
The judge who is reviewing the lawsuit is awaiting a response to queries sent to Brazil courts before announcing whether the complaint will go to trial. Inneo was building and supplying the towers to Acciona in the South American country.