Quantum, Imation Settle Suit
As part of settlement, storage tape behemoth Quantum will pay rival Imation a minimum of $5 million and give Imation a second chance at making its products Quantum-compatible.Storage tape behemoth Quantum Corp. will pay smaller rival Imation Corp. a minimum of $5 million and will give Imation a second chance at making its products Quantum-compatible, as part of a lawsuit settled Wednesday, officials from both companies said. Imation, of Oakdale, Minn., sued Quantum last fall in Federal District Court in St. Paul, for alleged price fixing and conspiracy to monopolize the niche of digital linear tape cartridges. DLT was originally invented by now defunct Digital Equipment Corp., acquired by Quantum in late 1994, and is currently sold by Quantum and its licensees, such as Fuji Photo Film USA Inc. and Maxell Corp. of America. Imation began the certification process to become a licensee in mid-1997, but failed, Quantum officials have said, declining to explain how or why. Imation originally sought $450 million, so Quantums settlement is good for the company, said John Gannon, president of the DLTtape group. "Litigation is not cheap. The sooner we were able to reach a settlement, the better off wed all be," he said.
Gannon said Imations as-yet incompatible product has "not significantly" affected Quantum sales. He declined to say if Imation can sue again if it fails the certification process again, but "Im convinced that were not going to have anything like that occur," he said. He would not give a timetable for when Imation could achieve certification.