CEOs of LG Chem, SK Innovation may hold meeting over lawsuits

Chief executives of LG Chem Ltd. and SK Innovation Co. ― two South Korean electric vehicle battery makers ― are expected to meet later this month to make a breakthrough in their legal standoff over EV battery patents, industry sources said Saturday.

LG Chem CEO Shin Hak-cheol and SK Innovation CEO Kim Jun may hold a meeting after next week’s Chuseok holiday, sources said. This year’s Chuseok holiday runs from next Thursday to Sept. 15.

The two sides have been at loggerheads in recent months over lawsuits.

In April, LG Chem filed a pair of lawsuits with the U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC) and a U.S. District Court of Delaware, requesting an embargo on importing EV battery-related products from SK Innovation, while demanding compensation for the piracy of trade secrets.

In response, SK Innovation filed a suit with the USITC this month, claiming that LG Chem infringed on its patents in lithium-ion batteries. SK Innovation also lodged a damage suit against LG Chem with a South Korean court in June, saying the latter’s suit is hurting its EV battery business.

Despite legal actions, SK Innovation said earlier that it is willing to discuss the matter with LG Chem out of court and settle the problem. LG Chem has been responding that it can accept the dialogue offer should SK Innovation come up with a sincere apology and a compensation plan.

“It’s not likely that they will make dramatic progress even after a meeting,” a source familiar with the matter said. “There is still a possibility that both sides enter a full-scale legal battle to conclude the problem.”

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