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Paragon alleges infringement in suit against Malpack

By: Frank Esposito

September 20, 2012

NASHVILLE, TENN. (Sept. 20, 11:05 a.m. ET) — Stretch film maker Paragon Films Inc. has filed a patent infringement lawsuit against competitor Malpack Ltd. and Malpack’s U.S. business unit.

The suit — filed in U.S. District Court in Nashville — claims that Ajax, Ontario-based Malpack has violated a Paragon patent for a type of stretch film. Paragon, based in Broken Arrow, Okla., is seeking unspecified damages and an order to bar Malpack from continued infringement, officials said in a Sept. 19 news release.

“We intend to defend vigorously against any infringement of our core intellectual property,” Paragon President and CEO Mike Baab said in the release.

Officials with Malpack could not be reached for comment. The firm was founded in 1973 and began making polyethylene stretch film in 1998, according to its website. It currently operates more than 100 million pounds of annual film capacity. The lawsuit also names Malpack USA Inc.

Paragon makes PE roll and specialty films at plants in Broken Arrow and in Taylorsville, N.C. The firm ranks as North America’s 48th-largest film and sheet manufacturer in Plastics News’ most recent industry ranking, with annual sales estimated at $145 million.

Paragon spokeswoman Alissa Hurley said the lawsuit is “completely unrelated” to a lawsuit filed in February against Malpack and eight other plastic film makers by Multilayer Stretch Cling Film Holdings Inc. That suit — filed in U.S. District Court in Memphis, Tenn. — claims violations of a stretch cling film patent that Multilayer bought from Manuli Stretch Film Group SpA of Milan, Italy. Paragon is licensing that technology from Multilayer, a technology licensing firm based in Wilmington, Del.

Hurley added that no court dates have been set in Paragon’s suit against Malpack.