According to a report by The Boston Globe, Apple and advanced battery maker A123 Systems are believed to have nearly settled their federal lawsuit, that accuses Apple of poaching A123’s scientists and engineers to build a competing battery business. The lawsuit was filed earlier this year, which also added fuel to reports that Apple is researching the possibility of building an electric car, a project that Apple has not yet official talked about.
On Tuesday, a federal judge granted A123 more time to finalize the settlement with Apple. In a court filing, the two sides reported that they “have reached an agreement, signed a term sheet, and are in the process of drafting a final settlement agreement.” Apple had hinted at a possible settlement in earlier court filings.
A123 had claimed in its lawsuit that former engineer Mujeeb Ijaz had violated an agreement not to raid A123’s employee ranks after joining Apple. Ijaz and four other former A123 employees were named as defendants in the lawsuit. A123 also alleged that Apple and Ijaz were “systematically hiring away A123’s high-tech PhD and engineering employees”. Meanwhile Apple had denied any wrongdoing, dismissing A123’s claims as “premised on baseless conjecture.”
The advanced battery maker is now owned by China’s Wanxiang Group, who purchased the company out of bankruptcy for about $257 million in late 2012.