Avery Dennison Corp. (AVY) said a U.S. judge has rejected 3M Co.'s (MMM) request to stop Avery from selling a type of sheeting that makes road signs more reflective at night.
A representative for 3M said that the company was disappointed in the ruling but that it hasn't had a chance to review the decision or evaluate its options.
According to a press release from Avery Dennison, Chief Judge Michael J. Davis of the United States District Court in Minnesota denied an injunction filed by 3M to prevent Avery Dennison from selling it OmniCube, based on a patent-infringement claim.
The judge said Avery Dennison had raised a substantial question of the patent's validity, according to the office-supplies and label manufacturer.
Avery Dennison had previously filed complaints in response to 3M's injunction request over OmniCube. In October, Avery Dennison claimed 3M was unlawfully monopolizing markets for the reflective sheeting, alongside claims of fraud and false advertising.
Avery Dennison's earnings have rebounded in the past several quarters, sometimes sharply. While profit rose a meager 2.7% as margin deterioration masked revenue growth in its latest quarterly results, the results were better than expected and the company raised its forecast for the year.
Meanwhile, 3M--which makes thousands of products ranging from Post-It notes to furnace filters and power lines--has reported stronger sales recently.
In recent trading, shares of Avery Dennison were up 0.7% to $42.52. 3M's shares were up 0.4% to $86.88.
-By Joan E. Solsman, Dow Jones Newswires; 212-416-2291; firstname.lastname@example.org