By Liz White, ERJ staff
Menlo, Georgia-Medical and industrial glove maker Best Manufacturing Co. and its parent company Tillotson Corp. have settled infringement cases about its patent for thin disposable nitrile gloves (US Patent No. Re. 35, 616).
Best said in a statement that it has completed settlement and licensing agreements with Medline Industries Inc., Shen Wei USA and Asian manufacturers Zhangjiangang Dayu Rubber Products Co. Ltd, Zhenjiang Kangda Emulsion Co. Ltd and Zhenjiang Suhui Latex Products Co. Ltd. The group previously finalised similar agreements with High Five Products Inc. and Omni International llc.
The firm pointed out that although the financial terms of the settlements are confidential, â€œall have included consent injunctions respecting the validity and enforceability of the patent and admissions of infringement.â€
According to Best, Sempermed USA Inc., a unit of Austrian glove maker Sempermed, part of Semperit AG, has also entered into a settlement and license agreement concerning the Tillotson patent. Tillotson's initial patent litigation with Safeskin Corp. resulted in a confidential settlement and license agreement in November 1999, the group added.
â€œWe will continue to aggressively defend our intellectual property rights, support and protect our current licensees and grant licenses where appropriate,â€ commented Bill Alico, Tillotson president & ceo.
Tillotson's nitrile glove patent involves a low-modulus formulation which, it claims, makes Best's disposable nitrile glove â€œuniquely comfortable and fatigue-reducing.â€ This is â€œat the heart of its flagship brand N-DEX(R),â€ Best says.
Best's nitrile range also includes what it calls the world's first accelerator-free disposable nitrile glove, and a black version of the accelerator-free type.