Samsung and Toshiba Agree to Settle Antitrust Claims of Indirect Purchasers of Optical Disk Drives

May 30, 2018 by

After losing on a motion for summary judgment, a class of optical disk drive (“ODD”) end users has agreed to settle with Samsung and Toshiba. The case is currently on appeal to the Ninth Circuit, but attorneys for the plaintiffs filed a request with the Ninth Circuit to extend the appeals briefing by 60 days while they seek a limited remand to the district court for approval of the settlements.

The indirect purchaser class covers those that bought ODDs and devices at the end of the supply chain rather than straight from the manufacturers. Samsung and Toshiba were among numerous defendants named in multi-district litigation over the price of optical disk drives — a key component for reading and writing data on CDs, DVDs, and Blu-ray Discs — that are found in computers, video game consoles, and other devices. The litigation, centering on an alleged industry-wide price-fixing conspiracy, was consolidated in 2010 and includes claims brought by indirect purchasers, direct purchasers, retailers, and states.

Many defendants had settled before U.S. District Judge Richard Seeborg, who is overseeing the litigation, granted summary judgment against the indirect purchasers. In October, electronics companies Pioneer and Philips committed to paying a combined $50.5 million to settle claims brought on behalf of the indirect purchaser consumers. That deal brought total recovery for the indirect purchasers to around $175 million. Deals with Panasonic, NEC Corp., Sony, and Hitachi LG Data Storage have also been approved by Judge Seeborg.

Stoll Berne represents the class representative in the case from Oregon.

The case is Indirect Purchaser Class v. Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., case number 18-15058, in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

Steve Larson
An experienced trial lawyer who handles both hourly and contingent fee cases, Steve has expertise in class actions, consumer cases, antitrust litigation, securities litigation, corporate disputes, intellectual property disputes, unfair competition claims, employment matters, and disputes involving family wealth. Steve regularly represents individuals and businesses in federal and state court and has obtained class-wide recovery in multiple class actions. A veteran practitioner, Steve's clients value his creative approach to resolving complex litigation matters.

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