TULSA — The George Kaiser Family Foundation settled a lawsuit that alleged the world's most prolific patent holder fraudulently took “millions of dollars” from the foundation after it contributed more than $610 million to fund his printing company.
The Tulsa-based foundation filed the lawsuit earlier this year in U.S. District Court in Tulsa against Kia Silverbrook, his common-law wife Janette Faye Lee and their patent-holding company, Silverbrook Research Pty Ltd.
Silverbrook is an Australian who was named by Business Insider magazine as the most prolific patent holder in the world with at least 4,394 patents to his name.
The lawsuit centered on a soured deal involving Memjet, a printing company that makes color printheads using a “waterfall” technology.
The Kaiser foundation had described the lawsuit as a business dispute over the control of intellectual property surrounding a revolutionary new printing technology. Settlement terms were not disclosed.
“GKFF is pleased that we were able to come to a beneficial financial settlement with Silverbrook. We are supportive of Memjet and are excited about the future of their industry-leading technology,” said Ken Levit, executive director of the Kaiser foundation, in an emailed statement.
Silverbrook Research said in a news release that the settlement of litigation in Oklahoma, the U.K. and Ireland will enable the continued commercialization of Memjet's printing technology. Also under the agreement, Memjet will assume direct ownership and control of the intellectual property portfolio related to the technology.
Kia Silverbrook will continue to support Memjet as a special adviser to the Memjet board.