Can ParkerVision Be Saved?

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Radio frequency (RF) technology company ParkerVision Inc. (NASDAQ: PRKR) has had a rough couple of days. Shares have dropped nearly 70% of their value since Monday, following a U.S. District Court’s ruling against it in the company’s long-running patent infringement battle with Qualcomm Inc. (NASDAQ: QCOM).

The court denied Qualcomm’s motion for a new trial on grounds that ParkerVision’s patent was invalid, but granted a new trial on the grounds of non-infringement. ParkerVision said it would appeal the ruling.

In February 2013, ParkerVision won a round in the case it first brought in 2011 against Qualcomm for infringing on RF technology used to capture data from cell phone carriers in a standard handset. ParkerVision was seeking about $430 million in damages, but in October of last year a jury agreed that Qualcomm had infringed ParkerVision’s patent and awarded the company $173 million in damages.

Monday’s ruling essentially overturned that patent award and now ParkerVision’s stock price has evaporated. Whether ParkerVision can prevail on an appeal is certainly no better than a 50/50 proposition.

The stock traded around $0.40 a share in December of 2010, before the company brought its suit against Qualcomm. The stock spiked to nearly $7.80 a share when the $173 million damage award was announced.

The stock closed at $1.54 on Tuesday, down 16.7% from its opening price of $1.80. Shares closed at $5.01 last Friday and opened Monday at $1.25 on news of the court ruling.

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