Diversified technology conglomerate
) recently settled its lawsuit with
Avery Dennison Corporation
), a leading global manufacturer of labeling and packaging
materials, pertaining to the patent infringement on
retroreflective sheeting products widely used on traffic signs,
pavement markings, and other traffic control products.
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3M was the industry pioneer for retroreflective sheeting products
when it introduced them in the market about 60 years back. Since
then, 3M has continuously offered technologically advanced
products to meet the evolving requirements of the traffic safety
and security division. Consequently, 3M's Display and Graphics
segment has established itself as a premier manufacturer of
prismatic reflective sheeting for traffic signs, bright and
durable pavement markings, reflective materials for work zone
applications, and roadway asset management systems and services.
The legal tussle started when Avery Dennison alleged patent
infringements and antitrust violations against 3M and filed
copyright litigation. However, the jury upheld the validity and
enforceability of 3M's patents and dismissed all allegations
against it. 3M was also allowed to use its patented reflective
sheeting technology in its products.
Formerly known as Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing Company, 3M
was founded in 1902 and is currently based in St. Paul,
Minnesota. The company has manufacturing operations across 70
countries. It has more than 35 business units organized into six
segments: Consumer and Office; Display and Graphics; Electro and
Communications; Healthcare; Industrial and Transportation; and
Safety, Security and Protection Services.
Consistent with its long-term strategy of accelerating
investments in high-growth programs, 3M strives to deliver
sustainable increases in sales, earnings and free cash flow. The
company's ability to convert high R&D spends into up-cycle
market share gains, pricing power, and margin determines its
success over the years.
Over the years, 3M has continuously upgraded its product
portfolio to fight against stiff competition from other leading
players in the industry such as
Macquarie Infrastructure Company LLC
), each carrying a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). 3M presently has a Zacks
Rank #3 (Hold).