In July of 2011 Trulia Inc. became the latest online property portal to be sued by CIVIX, a Virginia-based company which claims that Trulia, as well as a number of other companies, infringed on two patents covering a process that enables consumers to search for items of interest in specific geographic locations.
The licensing agreement calls for Trulia to pay a minimum of $550,000 to CIVIX, and an additional $350,000 should the company complete an initial public offering. In Trulia’s S-1 registration statement for a planned IPO, the company has paid CIVIX $450,000 thus far.
According to agentgenius.com, CIVIX has sued more than a dozen operators of websites which offer location-based search capabilities, including Move, Inc and the National Association of Realtors, both of which settled with the company.
LoopNet Inc. on the other hand, one of the other companies being sued by CIVIX has made the decision to ‘vigorously defend itself’ instead.
LoopNet denies having infringed on the CIVIX patents, because it claims to be covered by Microsoft Corporation’s license, already granted to it by CIVIX (Microsoft powers LoopNet with its software).
Source: Inman News