United States v. General Electric Co.

Decision Date04 April 1949
Docket NumberCiv. A. No. 1364.
PartiesUNITED STATES v. GENERAL ELECTRIC CO. et al.
CourtU.S. District Court — District of New Jersey
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Leonard J. Emmerglick, and Bartholomew A. Diggins, Sp. Assts. to Atty. Gen., John S. James, of New York City, Robert B. Hummel, of Alexandria, Va., Horace H. Robbins, of New York City, and Burton R. Thorman, of Washington, D. C., Sp. Attys., Wendell Berge, Asst. Atty. Gen., Alfred E. Modarelli, U. S. Atty., of Newark, N. J., for plaintiff.

Katzenbach, Gildea & Rudner and George Gildea, all of Trenton, N. J. (Simpson, Thacher & Bartlett, Whitney North Seymour, Albert C. Bickford, Stephen P. Duggan, Jr., R. E. Anderson, Charles J. Colgan, Irving Parker, George G. Gallantz, James H. Sheils, Fish, Richardson & Neave, Alexander C. Neave, H. R. Ashton, Charles H. Walker and Harry Pugh, Jr., all of New York City, and Quincy D. Baldwin, of Cleveland, Ohio, of counsel), for General Electric Co. and International General Electric Co., Inc.

Lindabury, Depue & Faulks and Josiah Stryker, all of Newark, N. J. (Cravath, DeGersdorff, Swaine & Wood and Robert T. Swaine, all of New York City, Roy Weidman, of Newark, N. J., and Harold Smith, Donald C. Swatland and Edwin H. Todd, all of New York City, of counsel), for Westinghouse Electric & Manufacturing Co.*

Hobart, Minard & Cooper and Ralph E. Cooper, all of Newark, N. J., and Donald O. Hobart, of Montclair, N. J. (John Lord O'Brian, of Washington, D. C., Halsey Sayles, of Elmira, N. Y., and William P. Stewart, of Buffalo, N. Y., of counsel), for Corning Glass Works, American Blank Co., and Empire Machine Co.

Edgar W. Hunt, of Lambertville, N. J. (George C. Sharp and Emery H. Sykes, both of New York City, of counsel), for N. V. Philips' Gloeilampenfabrieken.

Wall, Haight, Carey & Hartpence and Edward J. O'Mara, all of Jersey City, N. J. (Edwin Foster Blair, and Gregory H. Doherty, both of New York City, of counsel), for Consolidated Electric Lamp Co.

Pitney, Hardin, Ward & Brennan, John R. Hardin, and Arthur J. Martin, Jr., all of Newark, N. J., and William R. Lockridge, of Salem, Mass. (Ropes, Gray, Best, Coolidge & Rugg, John B. Hopkins, Charles B. Rugg and Warren F. Farr, all of Boston, Mass., of counsel), for Sylvania Electrical Products, Inc.

Wicoff & Lanning and Kenneth H. Lanning, all of Trenton, N. J. (Leonard & Leonard, Gordon M. Leonard, and Ernest Freeman, Jr., all of Chicago, Ill., of counsel), for Chicago Miniature Lamp Works.

Martin & Reiley and Blair Reiley, all of Newark, N. J. (Bartlett, Eyre, Keel & Weymouth, by Richard Eyre, all of New York City, of counsel), for Tung-Sol Lamp Works, Inc.

                              CONTENTS
                  Subject                               Page
                Pleadings .............................. 764
                Introduction ........................... 771
                Adjuvant Monopolies .................... 777
                    Lamp Making Machinery .............. 777
                    Glass Machinery and Products ....... 779
                    Lamp Base Machinery and Bases ...... 799
                    Filament and Leading-in Wire ....... 803
                    Expansion and Distribution of
                      Outlets .......................... 805
                  Patents .............................. 805
                Agency ................................. 817
                Foreign Agreements ..................... 827
                Mazda .................................. 848
                Public Business ........................ 850
                Electrical Testing Laboratories ........ 852
                Public Utilities ....................... 854
                Suppression of Research and Development
                ........................................ 856
                Fluorescent License .................... 858
                Argon Gas .............................. 859
                Suppression of Trade by Domestic Licenses
                ........................................ 860
                    Competition Eliminated Between
                      General Electric and Westinghouse
                ........................................ 860
                    "B" Licensees ...................... 873
                Clayton Act ............................ 884
                Philips ................................ 884
                Monopoly of Incandescent Electric
                      Lamps ............................ 892
                    Dominant Position .................. 892
                    Profits ............................ 894
                    General Monopoly Powers ............ 895
                      Intimidation of Business ......... 895
                      Deterioration of Product ......... 896
                      Power to Exclude ................. 899
                    Industrial Surveillance ............ 901
                    Conclusion ......................... 901
                Objections and Motions ................. 902
                General Conclusion ..................... 905
                

FORMAN, District Judge.

The Pleadings

Pursuant to § 41 of the Sherman Act, § 152 of the Clayton Act and § 743 of the Wilson Tariff Act, the plaintiff, the United States of America, filed a complaint to prevent and restrain alleged continuing violations of §§ 14 and 25 of the Sherman Act, § 36 of the Clayton Act and § 737 of the Wilson Tariff Act respectively. It named the following defendants:

1. General Electric Company, described as a New York corporation, having lamp plants in Ohio, New Jersey, Missouri, Massachusetts, New York and California, which together with its subsidiaries is engaged principally in production and distribution of incandescent electric lamps, electrical appliances and other electrical products, and is the largest producer of glass bulbs, lamp bases, and incandescent electric lamps in the United States and in the world.

2. International General Electric Company, Inc., a New York corporation whose outstanding capital stock is entirely owned by General Electric Company. It is described as a large distributor in and to foreign countries of American produced incandescent electric lamps, electrical appliances and other forms of electrical products.

3. Westinghouse Electric & Manufacturing Company,8 a Pennsylvania corporation with its principal office in New York City and its lamp plants in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. It is described as the second largest manufacturer and distributor of incandescent electric lamps in the United States. Together with its subsidiaries it manufactures and distributes a full line of electrical appliances and other electrical products, some of which are competitive with similar products produced by defendant General Electric and its subsidiaries.

4. Corning Glass Works,9 a New York corporation which together with its subsidiaries is described as the largest manufacturer and distributor of specialty glass products in the United States. It is principally engaged in the production and distribution of glass bulbs, tubing and cane, signal and optical ware, heat resisting ware, and other forms of specialty ware.

5. American Blank Company,10 a corporation of the State of Maine, described as a patent holding company for defendants, General Electric and Corning. It is said to be wholly owned by defendant Corning, or Corning subsidiary, Empire Machine Company.

6. Empire Machine Company,10 a corporation of the State of Maine, described as a patent holding company for the defendant Corning, 90% of the stock of which is owned by the stockholders of Corning.

7. N. V. Philips' Gloeilampenfabrieken, a limited company of Holland. It is described as having been engaged for many years in the business of manufacturing, among other things, glass bulbs, tubing and cane at several of its plants including those in Holland and distributing and selling such products throughout the world, including importations into the United States. (Jurisdiction over Philips was obtained by service on its officers who had taken refuge in this country to escape Nazi domination.)

8. Consolidated Electric Lamp Company, a Massachusetts corporation licensed by defendant General Electric to produce and distribute large type incandescent electric lamps in the United States.

9. Hygrade Sylvania Corporation, a Massachusetts corporation described as being licensed by General Electric to produce and distribute large type incandescent electric lamps in the United States.

10. Ken-Rad Tube and Lamp Corporation,11 a corporation of Delaware described as licensed by General Electric to produce and distribute large type incandescent electric lamps in the United States.

11. Chicago Miniature Lamp Works, a corporation of Illinois licensed by General Electric to produce and distribute miniature incandescent electric lamps in the United States.

12. Tung-Sol Lamp Works Incorporated, a corporation of Delaware described as being licensed by General Electric to produce and distribute miniature type incandescent electric lamps in the United States.

For brevity the plaintiff will be usually referred to herein as the Government and the defendants' corporate titles will generally be shortened to the following:

General Electric Company — General Electric or GE

International General Electric Company, Incorporated — International General Electric or IGE

Westinghouse Electric & Mfg. Co. — Westinghouse

Corning Glass Works — Corning

American Blank Company — American Blank

Empire Machine Company — Empire

N. V. Philips' Gloeilampenfabrieken — Philips

Consolidated Electric Lamp Company — Consolidated

Hygrade Sylvania Corporation — Sylvania

Ken-Rad Tube and Lamp Corporation — Kenrad

Chicago Miniature Lamp Works — Chicago Miniature

Tung-Sol Lamp Works Incorporated — Tungsol

In paragraphs 17 to 83, inclusive, of the complaint, the Government described the history of the incandescent electric light lamp industry and its technical development. It outlined the business organization of the industry during the periods from 1879 to 1896; 1896 to 1911; and 1911 to 1926. In the earliest period General Electric succeeded to the interests of practically all of the companies engaged in the manufacture of incandescent electric light lamps with the exception of Westinghouse. General Electric had acquired the...

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