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MARKET REPORT: Nanoco plunges despite David and Goliath victory

Battle: Nanoco sued in February 2020 for patent infringement, alleging the South Korean tech giant used its 'quantum dot' technology without permission on its TVs

Shares of Nanoco fell despite the tech company settling its long-running legal dispute with Samsung.

The Manchester-based group will receive £124million in what will end a three-year battle between David and Goliath.

But the agreed settlement fell short of analysts’ estimates, which expected Samsung to pay around £215million.

Shares plunged 26.6%, or 9.8p, to 27p after the news.

Nanoco filed a patent infringement lawsuit in February 2020, alleging that the South Korean tech giant used its “quantum dot” technology without permission on its televisions.

Battle: Nanoco sued in February 2020 for patent infringement, alleging the South Korean tech giant used its 'quantum dot' technology without permission on its TVs

Battle: Nanoco sued in February 2020 for patent infringement, alleging the South Korean tech giant used its ‘quantum dot’ technology without permission on its TVs

Last month, the couple were due in court in Texas, but agreed to settle. Having avoided a jury trial, he gave the companies just 30 days to work out the terms of the no-fault agreement.

Nanoco insists the decision to settle was preferable to a lengthy legal process, even though analysts have said the value of a jury trial could exceed £400million. Nanoco also claimed last month that any final deal would likely take the form of a one-time payment.

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Now the band have revealed that under the terms of the no-fault agreement, the £124million settlement fee will instead be paid in two equal instalments. The first will be paid on March 5, the rest at the beginning of February next year.

Nanoco expects to pocket more than £74m after paying its legal costs.

Its chairman, Chris Richards, called the result “remarkable” and said the company would seek to use the fees to invest in the business and reward shareholders.

And tech company boss Brian Tenner added: “We have successfully validated our core intellectual property against one of the largest electronics companies in the world.

“Others operating in our space should take note. We remain vigilant of other potential counterfeiting activities.

In a separate update, the group said it expects its annual losses to decline.

The FTSE 100 rose 1.04%, or 81.64 points, to a record high of 7901.80 as traders and investors opened bottles of champagne. But the FTSE 250 dropped and was down 0.10%, or 21.23 points, at 20,593.46.

Retail stocks were the focus of Deutsche Bank Research’s concerns.

The brokerage upgraded B&M and Marks and Spencer to ‘buy’ from ‘hold’, adding that the outlook for this year is becoming ‘significantly less gloomy’.

B&M’s target price rose from 460p to 580p, while Marks and Spencer fell from 145p to 210p.

B&M shares rose 3.4%, or 16.4p, to 493.5p while Marks and Spencer added 1.2%, or 1.95p, to 163p. In the other direction, Asos fell 1.9%, or 19p, to 963p and Kingfisher fell 1.6%, or 4.7p, to 286.8p. However, Pets At Home rose 0.9%, or 3.4p, to 376p and Wickes also rose 0.3%, or 0.5p, to 152.3p.

Commodity-focused stocks also made gains. Shell added 3.3%, or 76.5p, to 2,414p just a day after the oil giant posted record annual profits of more than £32billion for 2022.

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Miners held their ground despite falling metal prices.

Antofagasta rose 1%, or 17p, to 1,736p, while Glencore gained 1.6%, or 8.9p, to 554.5p and Rio Tinto rose 1.1%, or 64p, to 6,128p.

Meanwhile, Centrica plunged 3%, or 2.92p, to 95.26p after energy watchdog Ofgem banned British Gas from using debt brokers to break into people’s homes to install prepaid meters.

Office space provider IWG took a hit after Barclays lowered its rating from ‘equal weight’ to ‘overweight’ and slashed the target price from 190p to 170p. The shares fell 0.5%, or 1p, to 196.7p.

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