Stanford University Home

Stanford News Archive

Stanford Report, May 24, 2000

University wants firm prevented from using 'Stanford' name

Stanford University has filed suit against a company known as Stanford Microdevices for infringement of the university's name and trademarks. Stanford is seeking an injunction in the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit to prevent the company from using the university's name and trademarks, pending resolution of the lawsuit, which was filed March 17.

Stanford Microdevices, based in Sunnyvale, Calif., is expected to issue an initial public offering this week. The company has disclosed the pending lawsuit in S-1 documents filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

"We believe it is important for the public to know that this company has no relationship whatsoever to Stanford University," said Debra Zumwalt, acting general counsel. "Stanford University does not endorse its products or services, has had no involvement in its development or technology, has not issued any licenses to the company and is not responsible for the quality of any goods offered to the public for sale by Stanford Microdevices. Any claims arising from the activities of Stanford Microdevices, or investment by the public in Stanford Microdevices, are the sole responsibility of the company."

Shelley Hébert, the university's director of business development, said Stanford actively protects its trademark rights.

"Because of Stanford's international reputation in technology and extensive relationships with Silicon Valley companies, there is a high likelihood that the public would be misled into believing that there is some connection between Stanford University and this company," Hébert said. "Stanford will not allow exploitation of its name and reputation by third parties seeking to profit from a false implication of affiliation with the university." SR

Related Information: