Tuesday, July 22, 2008, 7/22/2008 10:38:00 AM

Motorola Sues Former Executive Now With Apple's iPhone Team

By Todd
This is a story that may be misreported as a theft of trade secrets case when, instead, it appears to be a breach of noncompete agreement and inevitable disclosure case. That being said, Crain's Chicago Business is reporting that a former Motorola executive employee, Michael Fenger, has been sued by that company for leaving and going to work with Apple and its iPhone team. Mr. Fenger reportedly had a two-year noncompete agreement with Motorola that it says he is breaching through his Apple employment and additionally that his work at Apple will inevitably cause him to disclose Motorola's secrets that he learned about while with the Illinois-based company.

"He was privy to the pricing, margins, customer initiatives, allocation of resources, product development, multiyear product, business and talent planning and strategies being used by Motorola,'' according to the complaint.

This is an interesting hybrid case - a noncompete plus inevitable disclosure arguments. We'll report back soon on whether Motorola obtains a TRO or other injunctive relief against Mr. Fenger.

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