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News Corp. to Pay $500 Million to Settle Antitrust Litigation

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  • News Corp. to Pay $500 Million to Settle Antitrust Litigation



    It doesn’t exactly compare to the Boston Scientific/J&J deal, but, well, $500 million is $500 million.

    And that’s what News Corp. has agreed to pay to settle four years of antitrust litigation over the company’s practices in selling newspaper coupons and other marketing materials.

    Marketing-services firm Valassis had sued a unit of News Corp., News America Marketing, which sells coupon inserts in Sunday newspapers and in grocery-store displays. Valassis had alleged that the unit unfairly used its power with customers to gain advantages over competitors.

    Last year, a jury in a Michigan state court last year awarded $300 million to Valassis in related litigation, and a similar case has been pending in California. A federal-court trial was slated to begin on Tuesday.

    “It has become evident to our legal advisers from pretrial proceedings over the past couple of weeks that significant risks were developing in presenting this case to a jury,” Chase Carey, News Corp.’s president and chief operating officer, said in a statement. Click here for the story, from the WSJ; click here for the NYT story.

    News Corp., which owns The Wall Street Journal and this very blog, to boot, said Saturday the $500 million payment covers the $300 million award from 2009 and the federal and California cases.

    “I am pleased that we were able to reach a mutually agreeable settlement and avoid protracted future litigation,” Valassis Chairman and Chief Executive Alan Schultz said in a statement.

    Lawyers from Miller Canfield represented Valassis (among others). Lawyers from Hogan & Hartson, Gibson Dunn, Honigman Miller, and Constantine Cannon, repped News Corp.





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