With its recent registration of 52 new patents,
) marked an innovation milestone, taking the company's global
patent count past the 100,000 mark.
The multinational powerhouse boasts of a 50,000 deep product line
ranging from medical adhesives to reflective traffic signs to films
that enhance liquid crystal displays. It also has 22,800 registered
The Maplewood-based company with global operations invests around
6% of its annual revenues in research and development, aggregating
around $7.6 billion over the last five years. 3M has created an
impeccable reputation in innovation, and its resolute commitment
toward the same allows it to leverage its competencies in order to
meet the client needs.
3M was granted its first patent in 1924. The company registers
about 3,000 patents annually across the world, with over 500 of
them granted in the U.S. Its innovations are spread across a broad
spectrum of industries, with applications in consumer electronics
to reflective traffic signs and health care adhesives to
3M attributes its success to its scientists. In 1948, 3M launched
an employee program known as "15 percent time," wherein employees
are permitted to devote a part of their paid time to follow their
instincts and pursue creative ideas that might have gotten buried
under routine work. Apparently seeming like an employee benefit, in
reality it has produced some of the company's most successful
Technology stalwarts such as
) have reportedly emulated 3M's expensive program and offered
employees personal creative time.
Encouraging a corporate culture of creative competitiveness, to
this day, 3M's ethos remains "Innovate or Die."
3M currently holds a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). A better-ranked stock
worth considering in the diversified operations industry is
Icahn Enterprises, L.P.
), sporting a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).
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