Thursday, February 28, 2002

What's the Buzz?

Milacron settles patent claims

        Milacron Inc. has settled a third patent-infringement claim that it filed last summer against four European suppliers of plastic-molding machines.

        Milacron said Wednesday that it settled its patent dispute with SIPA S.p.A, an Italian packaging-machinery maker; its North American subsidiary; and its parent company, Zoppas Industries S.p.A.

        Terms weren't disclosed, but Milacron said it granted SIPA a nonexclusive license to use its machine-control technology and dropped its pending suit in U.S. District Court and a complaint filed with the U.S. International Trade Commission.

        The company, which has aggressively pursued similar patent claims in the last two years, said it reached a similar settlement with Boy Machines Inc. earlier this year.

        Last summer, Milacron filed suit against SIPA and Boy as well as two other European plastics-machinery makers, Sandretto USA Inc. and Sidel Inc. It reached an agreement with Sandretto in October. Only the lawsuit and claim against Sidel are unresolved, the company said.

— Mike Boyer

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