Estech Systems IP LLC, a subsidiary of Estech Systems, Inc. (Estech), has revived the litigation campaign that Estech launched in April 2020, suing 99 Cent Only Stores, Abbott Laboratories, BMW, Carvana, Charles Schwab, Conduent, Extra Space, First American Financial (Republic Title of Texas), Fiserv, Liberty Mutual, Marriott, McKesson, Petco, Public Storage, Primoris Services, Randstad, SoFi, and Toyota in separate Eastern District of Texas suits. The asserted patents are broadly directed to various aspects of Voice over IP (VoIP) technology (e.g., Caller ID, call quality monitoring, voicemail systems, and phone directories), with the defendants accused of infringement through the provision or use of VoIP products.

Estech transferred the patents-in-suit ( 6,067,349; 7,068,684; 7,123,699; 8,391,298) in a portfolio of 16 to Estech Systems IP in November 2021. They broadly concern various aspects of VoIP technology: the '349 patent, to directing an incoming call over a switched telephone network to a voice mailbox and allowing the recipient to call the party back while listening to the resulting voice message; the '684 patent, to a system where a multimedia server triggers data throttling for a network device to ensure quality of service for a connected telephony device, and where the above devices are all connected to a hub; the '699 patent, to a telephony device on one local area network (LAN) that connects to a voicemail system on a separate LAN over a wide area network (WAN) and plays back a message stored on the voicemail system; and the '298 patent, to a touchscreen IP telephone allowing a user to select numbers from a list drawn from multiple interconnected LANs. The '349 patent, issuing to Estech in May 2000 with an estimated priority in December 1997, belongs to a family of eight; the '684, '699, and '298 patents, belonging to a family of seven, issued to Estech in June 2006, October 2006, and March 2013, respectively, and share an estimated priority date in February 2001. Eric G. Suder—Estech's founder and chairman—and Harold E. A. Hansen II (of uncertain occupation) are the named inventors.

As noted above, Estech launched this campaign in April 2020, hitting a total of 20 defendants including BBVA, BOKF, Hilltop Holdings (PlainsCapital Bank), IWG (Regus International), Open Mortgage, Private Jets, Regions Financial, Target, and Wells Fargo. To date, only one prior case—against Howard Midstream Energy Partners—remains active, with the parties having entered discovery. In July 2021, Cisco filed a declaratory judgment complaint against Estech that was dismissed with prejudice (in light of settlement) just three months later. For more on that complaint, as well as the earlier stages of the campaign, see " Cisco Sues Estech as Estech and Prior Defendants Prep for Trial" (July 2021).

Estech Systems IP was formed in Texas on October 26, 2021 with Suder as its sole managing member; in court disclosures, the plaintiff has further identified Estech as its parent corporation. Estech—describing itself as "deliver[ing] high-performance business phone systems and cloud services"—was formed in Texas on October 26, 1987, with Suder identified as its founder and chairman. Suder reports having "over 20 years of experience in sales, marketing, and product management positions with Burroughs Corporation (now UniSys), as well as Qwip Systems and Exxon Office Systems (both venture companies of Exxon Corporation)". In its complaints, Estech alleges that it has sold "more than 400,000 solutions" and worked with more than "1500 certified partners" since 1987, touting its products as the "most integrated cloud PBX in the market" through the "award-winning ESI Cloud PBX; Voice over IP (VoIP) products and systems; and on-premises products".

The new Eastern District of Texas cases have been assigned to District Judge Rodney Gilstrap. The plaintiff is represented by Williams, Simons & Landis, PLLC. 12/30, Mitel Networks 2:21-cv-00473; 12/31, Abbott Laboratories 2:21-cv-00476, Carvana 2:21-cv-00482, Conduent 2:21-cv-00478, Extra Space 2:21-cv-00484, Fiserv 2:21-cv-00477, Liberty Mutual 2:21-cv-00475, Marriott 2:21-cv-00480, Public Storage 2:21-cv-00483, Primoris Services 2:21-cv-00481, Randstad 2:21-cv-00479, SoFi 2:21-cv-00485; 1/3, Charles Schwab 2:22-cv-00002, Toyota 2:22-cv-00001, 1/4, 99 Cents Only Stores 2:22-cv-00006, BMW 2:22-cv-00003, First American Financial (Republic Title of Texas) 2:22-cv-00007, McKesson 2:22-cv-00004, Petco 2:22-cv-00005, Eastern District of Texas.

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