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Mangren Research and Development Corp. v. National Chemical Co.
United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
87 F.3d 937 (1996)
Mangren Research and Development Corporation (Mangren) (plaintiff) owned a secret formula for making the best and most affordable specialty industrial solvent of its kind. By hiring a chemist who had worked for Mangren, National Chemical Company, Inc. (defendant) learned that the key ingredient in Mangren’s secret formula was the chemical polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE). National Chemical used this information to develop its own PTFE-based solvent. Mangren sued National Chemical in federal district court for violating Illinois’s version of the Uniform Trade Secrets Act (UTSA). National Chemical pointed out that its solvent contained less PTFE than Mangren used. National Chemical argued that this difference meant it did not misappropriate Mangren’s trade secret. The judge rejected this argument and denied National Chemical’s motion for summary judgment. After the jury returned its verdict for Mangren, National Chemical moved for a new trial. The judge denied this motion as well. National Chemical appealed to the Seventh Circuit.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Rovner, J.)
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