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PNA Wins Permanent Injunction Against Copycat Tapered Plate Dowels.

ATLANTA -- PNA, the industry leader in performance products for concrete flatwork, has successfully defended its intellectual property rights to all tapered plate dowel technology such as that used in the Diamond Dowel(R) System. This result protects building contractors, engineers and owners from substandard and knockoff products in the marketplace and their abilities to deliver durable, maintenance-free concrete flatwork. PNA's Diamond Dowel(R) System and PD3 Basket(TM) assembly provide load transfer and continuity of surface profile in concrete slabs-on-ground.

The favorable conclusion relied upon the validity and enforceability of U.S. patent # 6,354,760 that covers the Diamond Dowel(R) System, a product used extensively nationwide since 1997. PNA won a permanent injunction against products manufactured by a former employee, upholding its tapered plate dowels as the premier doweling systems in the marketplace. The order requires the infringing parties to cease manufacture, distribution and sales of product and prevents further acts of infringement associated with these products.

"PNA respects and supports innovation of products for the concrete construction industry but it cannot condone willful infringement of its intellectual property," said Sue Wooldridge, vice president, PNA Construction Technologies. "We have a heritage of engineering and inventing products that help designers and concrete contractors reliably deliver durable concrete flatwork that building owners demand. We are committed to developing further innovative products for 'strategic reinforcement' designs that lower project costs and provide modern floors for today's industrial, commercial and retail uses."

In industrial, warehouse and big box retail construction, tapered plate dowel technology prevents joint deterioration that can directly reduce logistics productivity, increase building maintenance costs and machinery repair costs and cause potential trip hazards for employees and consumers. Tapered plate dowel technology enables contractors to deliver stable joints in concrete flatwork without introducing negative side effects to durability inherent in historical, straight-sided dowels.

"PNA's plate dowel systems have been used in more than a billion square feet of concrete slabs-on-ground and have consistently helped contractors improve their profitability through the reduction of callbacks," adds Wooldridge. "With materials price volatility and trends toward reverse auction bid situations, both contractors and engineers need cost effective solutions they can offer while delivering on the owner's expectations. A slab-on-ground 'strategically reinforced' with tapered plate dowels eliminates more than 72 percent of the steel you would expect to find in conventionally reinforced slabs."

PNA's tapered plate dowel systems optimize steel use in a "strategically reinforced" concrete slab by increasing the bearing area of the dowel at the joint thereby reducing the bearing stress in the concrete. The tapered shape permits parallel and perpendicular movement at the construction or saw-cut contraction joint, eliminating restraint of the concrete. PNA's tapered dowel design eliminates misalignment during construction and can be located within inches of a joint intersection where positive load transfer is vital.

The trend toward substituting tapered plate dowels for conventional methods has been cited in American Concrete International and Portland Cement Association guidelines since 2000.

About PNA

Founded in 1986,is the industry leader in performance products for concrete flatwork that provide durable, maintenance-free floor slabs. PNA engineers and manufactures a range of products for providing load transfer, joint protection and slab surface continuity, including the Diamond Dowel(R) System, PD3 Basket(TM) assembly, Load Plate Basket(TM) assembly, Armor-Edge(TM) joint assemblies and HydraCure(TM) single and multi-use curing covers.

The Diamond Dowel(R) System has been industry accepted since 1999, and reached a company milestone in 2002, when it became a standard specification for several national big box retailers. Today, PNA products are in widespread use in concrete flatwork throughout North America and 20 countries worldwide. PNA's tapered plate dowels have been used in more than 1 billion square feet of concrete flatwork.

For more information on PNA and its products, visit www.pna-inc.com or call 1-800-542-0214.

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Publication:Business Wire
Date:May 10, 2006
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