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When research and development is the heartbeat of a company, innovation is bound to follow. Thomson Reuters recognised the creative innovations that take place at 3M every day and has placed the science-based company high on its fifth annual Top 100 Global Innovators list. From a pool of more than 1,300 companies, 3M proved once again it is one of the best in the world when it comes to applying science to solve problems and improve lives around the world.

“3M is built on innovation; its future will be too,” said Ashish Khandpur, senior vice president, Research and Development, and chief technology officer. “We constantly make investments to strengthen our scientific capabilities and increase our competitiveness to serve our customers and the broader society.”

3M strengths included all four principal criteria: overall patent volume, patent application-to-grant success rate, global reach of the portfolio, and patent influence as evidenced by citations. Its highest score was in the Globalization category, where Thomson Reuters recognised the company’s strong emphasis on protecting its patents and innovations around the world.

“3M embodies the Lifecycle of Innovation in its discovery, protection and commercialisation of inventions, making it a top-performing Top 100 Global Innovator,” said Laura Gaze, director of PR and thought leadership for Thomson Reuters IP and Science.

3M invests about 5.6 percent of its sales into research and development, with plans to move closer to 6 percent. That investment helps produce more than 3,000 patents each year. The science-based company is also set to open a new state-of-the-art R&D lab on its St. Paul, Minnesota campus.

The company owns 46 technology platforms, which range from adhesives and abrasives, to ceramics and nanotechnology. Its 8,500 scientists around the world share and combine these technologies across all its businesses to create a steady stream of unique products for customers. Roughly one-third of 3M’s sales come from products introduced in the last five years.