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Skype Founders Sue eBay

When Niklas Zennstrom and Janus Friis sold Skype to eBay in 2005 their company, Joltid, retained ownership of the peer-to-peer technology powering Skype and licensed it to eBay.

Joltid has recently sought to end its licensing agreement with Skype, which would pull the technology that Skype is reliant from under its feet. It is now suing eBay and the investment group that purchased 65% of Skype earlier this month, which includes Silver Lake Partners, Index Ventures, Andreessen Horowitz and the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board. Joltid claims that damages due to copyright infringement could amount to more than $75 million per day. eBay has announced that it is working on a replacement for Joltid’s technology in the event that it loses the case.

According to the New York Times, John Pluhowski, a spokesman for eBay, said the allegations made in the lawsuit “are without merit and are founded on fundamental legal and factual errors” and stated that the closing of the deal with the investment group was still expected to occur in the fourth quarter of 2009.

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