Litigation Note: DuPont Wins Summary Judgment in Rare Feat
Washington, D.C. – January 28, 2016: E. I. du Pont de Nemours and Company (DuPont) has prevailed in an antitrust price-fixing lawsuit alleging $176 million of damages brought by The Valspar Corporation and Valspar Sourcing, Inc. (collectively "Valspar"). On January 25, Judge Richard G. Andrews of the U.S. District Court District of Delaware granted DuPont a motion for summary judgment in its favor, finding that Valspar failed to provide sufficient evidence that DuPont participated in a conspiracy to fix the price of titanium dioxide.
Prior to filing suit in this case, Valspar had opted out of a class action in the U.S. District Court District of Maryland, In re Titanium Dioxide Antitrust Litigation, which was dismissed in its entirety following settlement. DuPont and one other defendant settled the class case prior to the summary judgment ruling, and two others settled after the ruling but shortly before trial. Judge Andrews cited the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit's September 2015 ruling affirming summary judgment in favor of defendants accused of fixing the price of chocolate confectionaries as "quite instructive" in explaining why he reached a different opinion than Judge Richard J. Bennett in the Maryland class action litigation, holding that the chocolate confectionary case suggests that "in the antitrust oligopoly context, summary judgment cannot be avoided simply by having amassed a significant amount of ambiguous evidence."
Crowell & Moring represented DuPont in this matter.
Manager, Media PR & Communications