Rivian served with Tesla trade secrets lawsuit

🚗 TRANSPORTATION: Tesla filed an intellectual property lawsuit against Michigan-based electric truck startup Rivian, Bloomberg reports. The lawsuit claims Rivian recruited Tesla employees and encouraged them to bring proprietary information that would give them a competitive advantage. It accuses those employees of violating non-disclosure agreements with Tesla.

  • Tesla claims at least four employees, and possibly two others, took trade secrets when they left to work at Rivian, which denies the allegations and says all new employees are required to confirm that they won’t bring their previous company’s intellectual property with them.
  • Rivian recently secured a whopping $2.5 billion in funding recently. It is repurposing a production facility in Normal, Illinois, and expects to start production on its first electric truck next year.
  • This is the second high-profile intellectual property lawsuit to cause a buzz in the last week over EV-related technology. Ford warned that a trade secrets battle between two Korean EV battery manufacturers could delay production of its new electric F-150 truck and negatively impact Michigan jobs.

***SPONSORED LINK: The Midwest Building Decarbonization Coalition is hiring a Manager of Community Engagement and Equity. Join the team to play a leadership role in developing an equitable and diverse Midwestern coalition to advance affordable homes and businesses that are free of climate change-causing air pollution.***

🔌 UTILITIES: The Nebraska Public Power District decided to abandon an innovative plan to partially convert an aging fossil fuel plant to operate on hydrogen, reports Energy News Network. Nebraska’s largest electric utility reportedly would have been the first to use this new technology.

🔬 RESEARCH: Scientists at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln found a way to fine tune skyrmions, which are magnetic atoms. This could improve electronics’ data storage and energy efficiency capabilities, and could allow manufacturers to shrink the size of some electronics.

***SPONSORED LINK: The Cleanie Awards — the #1 awards program in clean technology — is now accepting applications! Submit to win, or contact us with any questions. Applications close July 30.***

📊 RANKING: Eleven Midwest cities are on CBRE’s newly released list of the top 50 tech markets in the U.S. The report notes that fostering talent development has the potential to create new tech opportunities in the Midwest.

💻 VIRTUAL EVENT: The AgTech NEXT conference at the Danforth Plant Science Center in Missouri is shifting its traditional two-day event to a series of virtual one-hour conference sessions on Tuesdays from September 22-November 10.

Which other Midwest tech news should I be covering in Centered? Send news tips, press releases, and feedback to katie@centered.tech or connect on LinkedIn and Twitter @centereddottech.

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