Avery Settles Litigation with 3M

Zacks

Avery Dennison Corporation (AVY) has settled its patent infringement and antitrust litigation against 3M (MMM) through a mutually acceptable agreement. The agreement allows Avery to continue the sale of its OmniCube products.

The litigation started when 3M charged Avery for infringing the former’s patent and demanded a preliminary injunction to stop Avery from selling OmniCube, a Type XI sheeting product that boosts the visibility of road signs at night. The litigation also included other highway and transportation products.

Avery, which is among the leading office supply companies along with United Stationers Inc. (USTR) and ACCO Brands Corporation (ACCO), also filed its own lawsuits for patent infringement and antitrust violations. The court denied 3M’s plea and both the companies agreed to dismiss three pending cases.

Pasadena, Calif-based Avery manufactures pressure-sensitive materials, tickets, tags, labels and other converted products. Avery has over 200 manufacturing and distribution facilities encompassing more than 60 countries. Its clientele is spread across the U.S., Europe, Asia, Latin America and other regions.

Avery reported fourth-quarter 2012 adjusted earnings of 54 cents per share, up 50% from the year-ago adjusted earnings of 36 cents per share and ahead of the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 49 cents.

Total revenues for the quarter increased 5.3% to $1.5 billion from $1.4 billion in the prior-year quarter. Revenues were ahead of the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.4 billion.

Avery’s restructuring initiatives are expected to deliver annualized savings of more than $100 million in 2013. Furthermore, with the divestiture of the underperforming Office and Consumer Products unit, the company will be able to focus on its market-leading, pressure-sensitive materials business and Retail Branding and Information Solutions segment.

Avery currently retains a short-term Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

 

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