ContentGuard, a subsidiary of the Kirkland-based patent holding firm Pendrell Corp., announced a partnership today with one of Korea’s top mobile handset makers.

ContentGuard and Pantech will team up to help improve the content experience on Pantech phones and tablets. The South Korean company was founded in 1991 and is the third-leading mobile manufacturer in Korea behind Samsung and LG.

The agreement provides Pantech access to ContentGuard’s digital rights management technologies for the next five years. It is also ContentGuard’s second deal with a major Korean mobile handset maker,

“With the explosive adoption of wireless devices that have a primary purpose of delivering a rich content experience, the need to protect the rights of content owners while at the same time giving consumers access to an unprecedented selection of digital content, has never been greater,” said Mario Obeidat, vice president of licensing for Pendrell, in a press release. “Pantech is a proven, innovative leader in developing breakthrough technologies in the mobile industry, and both companies are committed to working together to foster innovation in this rapidly expanding market.”

Pendrell is led by former Clearwire CEO Ben Wolff. The company bought ContentGuard for $90.1 million last September, for a 90.1 percent stake. ContentGuard was started at Xerox PARC in 2000, and since then has accumulated more than 260 patents in the digital rights management and content distribution space. Companies that have licensed ContentGuard’s technologies include Microsoft, Nokia, LG Electronics, Sony, Casio and Hitachi Mobile.

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