Uniloc 2017 LLC (“Uniloc 2017”) brought multiple patent infringement suits against Google LLC in the Eastern District of Texas. Uniloc 2017 alleged that various Google products infringed a variety of patents directed to innovations in multimedia content delivery (Nos. 6,628,712, 6,952,450, 7,012,960, and 8,407,609), IT security (Nos. 8,949,954 and 9,564,952), high-resolution imaging (No. 6,349,154), network connectivity (No. 8,194,632), video conferencing (No. 6,473,114), and image and text searching (Nos. 6,253,201 and 6,366,908). Those suits were later transferred to the Northern District of California. Google moved to dismiss the actions, alleging Uniloc 2017 lacked standing, and thus the court lacked subject matter jurisdiction. Google’s theory was that Uniloc 2017 lacked standing because it lacked the right to exclude, its predecessors having granted Fortress Credit Co. LLC a license and an unfettered right to sublicense to the asserted patents as part of a financing arrangement. Uniloc 2017 argued that its predecessors had not granted such a license to Fortress and, even if they had, the license would not eliminate Uniloc 2017’s standing.
Uniloc 2017 further argued that, in any event, any license had been eliminated by a Termination Agreement executed between Uniloc 2017’s predecessors and Fortress before these suits commenced. The district court granted Google’s motion to dismiss, finding that a license had been granted; that the license survived the Termination Agreement; and that Uniloc 2017 therefore lacked standing. We hold that the district court erred in interpreting the Termination Agreement and in concluding there was no subject matter jurisdiction. We reverse and remand.
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