Lexmark

Lexmark

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Lexmark International, Inc. is an American
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

 corporation
Corporation
A corporation is created under the laws of a state as a separate legal entity that has privileges and liabilities that are distinct from those of its members. There are many different forms of corporations, most of which are used to conduct business. Early corporations were established by charter...

 which develops and manufactures printing and imaging products, including laser and inkjet printers, multifunction products, printing supplies, and services for business and individual consumers. The company is headquartered in Lexington, Kentucky
Lexington, Kentucky
Lexington is the second-largest city in Kentucky and the 63rd largest in the US. Known as the "Thoroughbred City" and the "Horse Capital of the World", it is located in the heart of Kentucky's Bluegrass region...

.

History


Lexmark was formed in 1991 when IBM
IBM
International Business Machines Corporation or IBM is an American multinational technology and consulting corporation headquartered in Armonk, New York, United States. IBM manufactures and sells computer hardware and software, and it offers infrastructure, hosting and consulting services in areas...

 divested its printer and printer supply operations to the investment firm Clayton & Dubilier, Inc. in a leveraged buyout. Lexmark became a publicly traded company in 1995.

Operations


The firm's corporate and R&D
Research and development
The phrase research and development , according to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, refers to "creative work undertaken on a systematic basis in order to increase the stock of knowledge, including knowledge of man, culture and society, and the use of this stock of...

 offices are located at the headquarters in Lexington. Lexmark has offices throughout North and South America, Asia, Africa and Europe. The company has more than 13,000 employees worldwide. Lexmark was a Fortune 500
Fortune 500
The Fortune 500 is an annual list compiled and published by Fortune magazine that ranks the top 500 U.S. closely held and public corporations as ranked by their gross revenue after adjustments made by Fortune to exclude the impact of excise taxes companies collect. The list includes publicly and...

 company until they were ranked #507 in the 2009 Fortune 500
Fortune 500
The Fortune 500 is an annual list compiled and published by Fortune magazine that ranks the top 500 U.S. closely held and public corporations as ranked by their gross revenue after adjustments made by Fortune to exclude the impact of excise taxes companies collect. The list includes publicly and...

 rankings. In addition to manufacturing hardware under their own name, Lexmark also does third party development of printers for other major companies, such as Dell
Dell
Dell, Inc. is an American multinational information technology corporation based in 1 Dell Way, Round Rock, Texas, United States, that develops, sells and supports computers and related products and services. Bearing the name of its founder, Michael Dell, the company is one of the largest...

 and IBM InfoPrint.

Products


Lexmark specializes in printers and printer accessories. Its current range of products includes color and monochrome laser printer
Laser printer
A laser printer is a common type of computer printer that rapidly produces high quality text and graphics on plain paper. As with digital photocopiers and multifunction printers , laser printers employ a xerographic printing process, but differ from analog photocopiers in that the image is produced...

s and inkjet printer
Inkjet printer
An inkjet printer is a type of computer printer that creates a digital image by propelling droplets of ink onto paper. Inkjet printers are the most commonly used type of printer and range from small inexpensive consumer models to very large professional machines that can cost up to thousands of...

s, both of which may include scanners (including all-in-one devices with faxing and copying capabilities and photo printers), and dot matrix
Dot matrix printer
A dot matrix printer or impact matrix printer is a type of computer printer with a print head that runs back and forth, or in an up and down motion, on the page and prints by impact, striking an ink-soaked cloth ribbon against the paper, much like the print mechanism on a typewriter...

 printers. Lexmark was one of the first companies to release wifi
WIFI
WIFI is a radio station broadcasting a brokered format. Licensed to Florence, New Jersey, USA, the station is currently operated by Florence Broadcasting Partners, LLC.This station was previously owned by Real Life Broadcasting...

 inkjet printer
Inkjet printer
An inkjet printer is a type of computer printer that creates a digital image by propelling droplets of ink onto paper. Inkjet printers are the most commonly used type of printer and range from small inexpensive consumer models to very large professional machines that can cost up to thousands of...

s and the very first to release printers with a web-enabled touchscreen, coming in early September of 2009. They also offer a wide variety of laser printers with software solutions for more professional printing environments.

A specialized series of printers are - if equipped with separately sold accessory cards (one memory card to hold data and one Lexmark Form card) - capable of interpreting textual data and converting them into forms. To create the forms required for this to work, one uses the software package "Lexmark Forms Composer", a proprietary package available from Lexmark aimed at developers. This same type of software is put into use on the newer releases of Lexmark printers with their business card scanning capabilities.

Legal cases


A court victory in 2005 was handed to Lexmark in the case of ACRA v. Lexmark
Arizona Cartridge Remanufacturers Association Inc. v. Lexmark International Inc.
Arizona Cartridge Remanufacturers Association Inc. v. Lexmark International Inc. 421 F.3d 981 was a decision by the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit which ruled that an End User License Agreement on a physical box can be binding on consumers who signal their acceptance of the...

. This case states that Lexmark can enforce the “single use only” policy written on the side of Lexmark printer cartridge boxes sold to certain large customers at a discount, with the understanding that the customers will return the cartridges to Lexmark after using them. This means that these customers can face lawsuits if they breach the agreements, and do not return the cartridges.

Also in 2005, Lexmark suffered a legal defeat in the case of Lexmark Int'l v. Static Control Components
Lexmark Int'l v. Static Control Components
Lexmark International, Inc. v. Static Control Components, Inc., 387 F.3d 522 , was an American legal case involving the computer printer company Lexmark, which had designed an authentication system using a microcontroller so that only authorized toner cartridges could be used...

, when the US Supreme Court
Supreme Court of the United States
The Supreme Court of the United States is the highest court in the United States. It has ultimate appellate jurisdiction over all state and federal courts, and original jurisdiction over a small range of cases...

 rejected Lexmark's petition for a writ of certiorari, thereby rejecting their attempt to have the Court hear their case. In this case, the defendant was a manufacturer of microchips that allowed third-party ink and toner cartridges to work on printers, including many manufactured by Lexmark. Such printers incorporated a feature that would require authentication from a microchip within the ink/toner cartridge in order to function; this was designed to prohibit users from refilling the cartridges. Yet a recent firmware update allowed Lexmark to prevent end-users from refilling ink cartridges or using third-party ink cartridges.

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