W.L. Gore & Associates has won its case before the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) on alleged improper conduct of business, involving the abuse of its powerful market position. The investigation was carried out by the FTC due to complaints about Gore's fabrics division, which was criticized for its practise of sealing licensing contracts with its customers. Gore's competitors argued that those contracts made it almost impossible for others to do business with the same brands. The FTC went through the documents for about two years and ended up clearing Gore. The members of the commission had some reading to do, since Gore submitted no less than 1.6 million documents to the authority. The U.S. officials' decision was probably not good news to Columbia Sportswear, which submitted a similar compaint to the European Commission on behalf of Columbia's Italian subsidiary, OutDry, another marketer of breathable and waterproof laminates. The case before the European authorities is still pending.