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CHECKMATE PREVAILS IN LEGAL BATTLE WITH LARGER RIVAL

 REDMOND, Wash., Jan. 7 /PRNewswire/ -- CheckMate Systems, a small Redmond company that produces high-tech equipment used in the development of specialized software, today announced it won a major court victory against its much larger rival, Applied Microsystems Corp., also from Redmond. The Superior Court of the State of Washington granted summary judgment and dismissed a trade secret suit that had been initiated by Applied Microsystems in 1992.
 "We're vindicated," said L. Alford Frost, president of CheckMate Systems. "The court has affirmed that there was no truth in their allegations. It appears Applied Microsystems was simply trying to force us out of business because their product doesn't compete well with ours."
 CheckMate Systems' legal defense was led by Robert E. Rohde, co-chair of the Intellectual Property Group of Bogle & Gates in Seattle. Rohde said the decision to grant summary judgment shows that Applied Microsystems didn't have a case.
 "This is a classic example of one company attacking another in the courts instead of engaging in good old-fashioned marketplace competition," said Rohde. "We feel the industry's preference for the CheckMate product didn't send Applied Microsystems back to the drawing board, as it should have. Instead, they called out the litigators even though there was no substance in their claims."
 Both CheckMate and Applied Microsystems design and manufacture in-circuit emulators that are used by software engineers to debug programs that operate everything from microwave ovens to satellite systems. The emulator market is worth about $400 million a year. Other competitors include Hewlett Packard and Tektronix.
 Applied Microsystems claimed in their suit that Frost and CheckMate Systems' chief engineer, Thomas P. Dillon, had illegally obtained proprietary information.
 Both are former employees of Applied Microsystems. Frost left that company in 1989 and started CheckMate Systems in 1991.
 "It's unfortunate that some companies tend to make these kinds of baseless charges," said Frost, "because they cheapen the value of legitimate intellectual property. The suit also made it difficult for us to convince our customers that we would survive their attack. But I assured them that we would and we did."
 -0- 1/7/94
 /NOTE TO EDITORS: L. Alford Frost, president of CheckMate Systems, and Robert E. Rohde, co-chair of the Intellectual Property Group of Bogle & Gates, will be available for comment during non-business hours at the following numbers: L. Alford Frost, 206-868-8266, and Robert E. Rohde, 206-281-7449/
 /CONTACT: L. Alford Frost of CheckMate, 206-869-7211; or Robert E. Rohde of Bogle & Gates, 206-621-1494, for CheckMate/


CO: CheckMate Systems; Applied Microsystems Corp.; Bogle & Gates ST: Washington IN: CPR SU:

JH-RB -- SE009 -- 0349 01/07/94 21:13 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jan 7, 1994
Words:431
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