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ORANGE COUNTY BRIEFLY

Patent Ruling Boosts Odetics Stock

June 10, 1998| Bloomberg News

Odetics Inc. stock hit a 52-week high Tuesday after the Anaheim company said a federal judge barred rival Storage Technology Corp. from selling computer data-storage systems that infringe on Odetics' patents.

Shares of the maker of communications, security and computer data-storage equipment surged to $17.13, their highest level in the last year, before retreating to close at $16.75, up $2.75, or nearly 20%. Nearly 1.29 million shares were traded, compared with average daily volume of 133,000 shares over the last three months.

Storage Technology shares fell $1.33 to $80.88.

The ruling by a federal judge in Virginia helps Odetics protect its share of the $32-billion world market for computer-storage products. Odetics makes tape-library systems that allow computer users to store, and recall instantaneously, large amounts of data. StorageTek, which is based in Louisville, Colo., has about 7% of that market with 1997 revenue of $2.14 billion.

Jurors concluded in March that StorageTek infringed on Odetics' patents and awarded the Anaheim company $70.6 million in damages. Jurors found that Odetics' technology was used in StorageTek's ACS 4400, Powderhorn and Wolfcreek automatic computer tape-library systems from June 1995 to March 1998.

StorageTek had no comment on the legal developments, spokesman Michael Klatman said.

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