Microsoft Wins $5.7M (€4.3M) in Anti-Piracy Lawsuit

Shanghai retailer agrees to pay a total of 36 million yuan to Microsoft

By on December 3rd, 2012 12:07 GMT

Microsoft has just won another battle in the war against Chinese companies that sell counterfeited software, as Shanghai-based retailer Ruichuang Network Technology agreed to pay a total of 36 million yuan ($5.7 million / €4.3 million) in compensation for distributing unlicensed products.

The Register reports that Ruichang has also posted a notice on the 2345 portal page to express “profound apologies” and to admit that selling pirated Microsoft software has caused the Redmond-based technology company huge financial losses.

The Chinese retailer has managed to sell a total of 1.3 million physical copies of counterfeited Microsoft software, while some specific apps have registered more than 11 million downloads.

Surprisingly, Microsoft initially asked for compensations of up to $16 million (€12.3 million) but, for some reason, the company has settled for only $5.7 million.

Microsoft is yet to release a public statement on this case, but it’s pretty clear that the company takes its anti-piracy efforts very seriously this time, mostly because China continues to remain an important hub when it comes to sales and distribution of unlicensed content.

Although it has already won legal disputes with several large companies based in China, the company is also accusing four state-owned corporations of using unlicensed software on their office computers.

According to Microsoft’s claims, China National Petroleum Corporation, China Post Group, China Railway Construction Corp., and Travelsky Technology Ltd. are all using unauthorized software, such as Office and Windows.

All these companies, on the other hand, denied the claims, saying that they’re actually paying much attention to all software solutions installed on their computers.

“We do not rule out the possibility some subsidiary units may have used unauthorized software, but it certainly is not such a large proportion,” a China Railway Construction spokesperson said in September. “The company attaches great importance to this matter, and we are holding an internal inquiry.”

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