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Barry Wright Corp. v. ITT Grinnell Corp.

724 F.2d 227 (1st Cir. 1983)

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Barry Wright Corp. v. ITT Grinnell Corp.

United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit

724 F.2d 227 (1st Cir. 1983)

Facts

ITT Grinnell Corp. (Grinnell) (defendant) made nuclear-plant pipe systems and bought over half of all mechanical snubbers, which are shock absorbers used in nuclear pipe systems, made in the world. Because snubbers made outside the United States did not meet regulatory standards, Grinnell relied on Pacific Scientific Company (Pacific), the only domestic manufacturer, for all its snubbers. Grinnell made a deal with Barry Wright Corp. (Barry) (plaintiff) to help Barry produce snubbers and to use Barry as its exclusive source in 1977, the year Barry was expected to produce enough snubbers for Grinnell’s needs. Pacific learned of the deal and offered Grinnell a discount in return for an order worth $5.7 million to satisfy Grinnell’s needs until 1977. Barry failed to meet its production goals, so Grinnell and Pacific entered into another fixed-amount contract expected to cover Grinnell’s needs for two more years. Grinnell also canceled its contract with Barry. Barry ceased development of its snubber business and sued Grinnell under the Sherman and Clayton Acts, alleging that Grinnell’s contracts with Pacific, which Barry classified as requirements contracts, were exclusionary and restricted competition. The district court found that no antitrust violations had occurred and ruled in favor of Grinnell. Barry appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Breyer, J.)

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