Antitrust

Robbins Geller’s antitrust practice focuses on representing businesses and individuals who have been the victims of price-fixing, unlawful monopolization, market allocation, tying and other anti-competitive conduct.  The Firm has litigated  many of the largest federal and state antitrust cases in the United States, resulting in notable victories against companies such as NASDAQ and Microsoft. Recently, Robbins Geller obtained an unprecedented $5.7 billion settlement in the Visa/MasterCard case, making it the largest antitrust class action settlement in history. 

The Firm’s antitrust cases include:

  • In re Payment Card Interchange Fee and Merchant Discount Antitrust Litig., 05 MDL No. 1720 (E.D.N.Y.).  Robbins Geller attorneys are co-lead counsel in a case that has resulted in the largest-ever antitrust class action settlement.  In December 2013, the district judge granted final approval of a settlement that will provide approximately $5.7 billion to class members, in addition to injunctive relief.  Plaintiffs, merchants that accept Visa or MasterCard, alleged that the defendants’ collective imposition of rules governing payment card acceptance violated federal and state antitrust laws. 
  • In re Currency Conversion Fee Antitrust Litig., 01 MDL No. 1409 (S.D.N.Y.).  The Firm’s  attorneys recovered $336 million for credit and debit cardholders in this multi-district litigation in which the Firm served as co-lead counsel. 
  • The Apple iPod iTunes Antitrust Litig., No. C-05-00037-JW (N.D. Cal.).  Robbins Geller is lead counsel for a class of iPod purchasers who challenged Apple’s use of iPod software and firmware updates to prevent consumers who purchased music from non-Apple sources from playing it on their iPods.  Apple’s conduct resulted in monopolies in the digital music and portable digital music player markets and enabled the company to charge inflated prices for millions of iPods.  The certified class includes individuals and businesses that purchased iPods directly from Apple between September 12, 2006 and March 31, 2009.  Plaintiffs expect to try the case in 2014.
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  • In re Aftermarket Automotive Lighting Products Antitrust Litig., 09 MDL No. 2007 (C.D. Cal.).  The Firm’s attorneys are co-lead counsel in this multi-district litigation in which plaintiffs allege that defendants conspired to fix prices and allocate markets for automotive lighting products.  The last defendants settled just before the scheduled trial, resulting in total settlements of more than $50 million. 

  • Dahl v. Bain Capital Partners, LLC, No. 07-cv-12388-EFH (D. Mass).  Robbins Geller attorneys are co-lead counsel on behalf of shareholders in this action against the nation’s largest private equity firms who have colluded to restrain competition to suppress prices paid to shareholders of public companies in connection with leveraged buyouts.  The trial court denied in part the defendants’ motion to dismiss and after the completion of discovery, the court also largely denied defendants’ motion for summary judgment.

  • In re Digital Music Antitrust Litig., 06 MDL No. 1780 (S.D.N.Y.).  The Firm’s attorneys are co-lead counsel in an action against the major music labels (Sony-BMG, EMI, Universal and Warner Music Group) in a case involving music that can be downloaded digitally from the Internet.  Plaintiffs allege that defendants restrained the development of digital downloads and agreed to fix the distribution price of digital downloads at supracompetitive prices.  Plaintiffs also allege that as a result of defendants’ restraint of the development of digital downloads, and the market and price for downloads, defendants were able to maintain the prices of their CDs at supracompetitive levels.  The Second Circuit Court of Appeals upheld plaintiffs’ complaint, reversing the trial court’s dismissal.  Discovery is ongoing.

  • In re NASDAQ Market-Makers Antitrust Litig., MDL No. 1023 (S.D.N.Y.).  Robbins Geller attorneys served as co-lead counsel in this case in which investors alleged that NASDAQ market-makers set and maintained artificially wide spreads pursuant to an industry-wide conspiracy.  After three and one half years of intense litigation, the case settled for a total of $1.027 billion, at the time the largest ever antitrust settlement.

  • In re Carbon Black Antitrust Litig., MDL No. 1543 (D. Mass.).  The Firm’s attorneys recovered $20 million for the class in this multi-district litigation in which the Firm served as co-lead counsel.  Plaintiffs purchased carbon black from major producers that unlawfully conspired to fix the price of carbon black, which is used in the manufacture of tires, rubber and plastic products, inks and other products, from 1999 to 2005.

  • In re Dynamic Random Access Memory (DRAM) Antitrust Litig., 02 MDL No. 1486 (N.D. Cal.).  Robbins Geller attorneys served on the executive committee in this multi-district class action in which a class of purchasers of dynamic random access memory (or DRAM) chips alleged that the leading manufacturers of semiconductor products fixed the price of DRAM chips from the fall of 2001 through at least the end of June 2002.  The case settled for more than $300 million.

  • Microsoft I-V Cases, JCCP No. 4106 (Cal. Super. Ct., San Francisco Cnty.).  Robbins Geller attorneys served on the executive committee in these consolidated cases in which California indirect purchasers challenged Microsoft’s illegal exercise of monopoly power in the operating system, word processing and spreadsheet markets.  In a settlement approved by the court, class counsel obtained an unprecedented $1.1 billion worth of relief for the business and consumer class members who purchased the Microsoft products.

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