WASHINGTON—Chinese manufacturers stole trade secrets from Schenectady, N.Y.-based SI Group Inc. in the matter of rubber resins and the processes for making them, an International Trade Commission administrative law judge has ruled.
SI Group filed a complaint with the ITC in May 2012, asking for an investigation of Sino Legend (Zhangjiagang) Chemical Co. Ltd., Red Avenue Chemical Co. Ltd., and certain affiliates.
According to SI Group's complaint, Sino Legend colluded with a plant manager at SI Group's Shanghai facility to steal SI Group's secrets for manufacturing rubber tackifier resins, then hired the manager away. SI Group sued Sino Legend in a Chinese court in 2007 on the same allegations.
In a June 17 initial determination, Judge Robert R. Rogers Jr. found that the companies in the case had misappropriated SI Group's trade secrets, then imported resins made with SI Group's processes into the U.S. This misappropriation, Rogers said, caused injury to the domestic rubber resins industry.
"This ruling is a real victory for SI Group," said Tom Masterson, general counsel for SI Group, in a press release. "The thorough process followed by the ITC demonstrates that misappropriation will not be tolerated in the United States."
Founded in 1906, SI Group is a global developer and manufacturer of phenolic resins, alkylphenolic resins, alkylated phenols and other chemical intermediates. The company operates 20 facilities in 10 countries, according to a company press release.