Thursday, May 10, 2012, 09:34 am PT (12:34 pm ET)
Proview rejects Apple's $16M offer for 'iPad' trademark - reportApple offered Proview 100 million yuan, or $16 million U.S., to settle their ongoing dispute over ownership of the "iPad" name, but Proview reportedly rejected the offer.
Proview rejected the offer because officials at the company seek $400 million U.S. for the rights to the iPad name, according to a report in China's Beijing Times, summarized by The Next Web. Proview apparently seeks that much money to appease its creditors, eight of which are Chinese banks.
One profile of Proview published in February portrayed the company as a nearly dead operation where officials are banking in on their trademark dispute with Apple. At its peak, the company employed 18,000 people and sold a stripped-down PC it called the Internet Personal Access Device, or iPAD.
Though the latest reports suggest there remains a great disparity between what Proview wants and what Apple is willing to pay, the $400 million sought by Proview is much less than earlier reports, which suggested the company was seeking $2 billion in damages from Apple.
Proview's only chance for a payout is in China, as the company's attempted lawsuit against Apple in California was tossed out this week by a Santa Clara County judge.
Earlier this week, Proview's attorney publicly said that his company and Apple have discussed a compensation package to settle their dispute out of court. He revealed that Apple proposed a settlement sum, but no specific amount was detailed.
Proview's Shenzhen-based operation has accused Apple of acting "with oppression, fraud and/or malice," when it used a proxy company, U.K.-based IP Application Development, Ltd., to buy the rights to the "IPAD" name. Those rights were purchased from a Taiwanese affiliate in 2009 for a reported 35,000 British pounds, or $55,000.
The company has argued that Apple acted fraudulently to acquire the iPad trademark, and that the purchase is void because Proview Shenzhen didn't authorize its affiliate to sell the trademark. For its part, Apple maintains that it legally purchased the rights to the Chinese "iPad" trademark, but Proview refuses to uphold its end of the bargain.
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