AMD seeks damages against Intel in Japan

Advanced Micro Devices's (AMD's) Japanese subsidiary has filed claims against Intel's Japanese subsidiary, seeking damages arising from alleged violations of Japan's Antimonopoly Act.

AMD Japan was seeking damages of $US50 million in the Tokyo High Court and "millions of dollars in damages" in Tokyo District Court for "various anticompetitive acts" by Intel KK, AMD said in a statement.

Between the two suits, AMD is seeking $US55 million damages in total.

The lawsuits are related to a March ruling by the Japan Fair Trade Commission (JFTC), which found that Intel had abused its monopoly power in the Japanese microprocessor market, substantially restraining competition. Intel disagreed with the findings, but pledged to refrain from several types of business practices.

Recently, AMD filed a broad antitrust suit against Intel in the US, accusing Intel of using discriminatory financial payments and threats to stifle competition and maintain its dominance in the microprocessor market. Intel has disagreed with AMD's claims.

Intel would not comment on the suits filed in Japan until it had received and reviewed them, a spokesperson for Intel in Japan, Masatoshi Mizuno, said. Intel's willingness to alter its business practices following the JFTC ruling is tantamount to an admission of guilt, argued director of AMD Japan,Shun Yoshizawa.

The $US50 million it was seeking in Tokyo High Court is based on profits that AMD claimed it would have earned from sales to NEC, Fujitsu, Toshiba, Sony, and Hitachi had it not been for Intel's anticompetitive behavior, Yoshizawa said.

"The JFTC ruling was a very good decision and shows that there is a big problem. ... It shows that the Japanese government is very concerned [about Intel]," Yoshizawa said.

The suit filed in Tokyo District Court seeks damages for various anticompetitive acts in addition to those covered by the JFTC ruling. For example, it alleges that Intel told Japanese PC makers to remove PCs using AMD processors from their catalogs and Web sites in exchange for large payments.

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