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Monday, October 28, 2013
HP Sues Optical Drive Makers
Hewlett-Packard has filed a lawsuit against seven optical disk drive makers, claiming they inflated optical disc drive prices.
The suit was filed Thursday in the federal southern district court of Houston against Toshiba, Samsung, Sony, Panasonic, NEC, TEAC and Quanta Storage.
We are expecting responds for a comment from these ODD makers.
HP claims that claims the conspiracy to drive up prices took place from at least Jan. 1, 2004 through Jan. 1, 2010.
"During the conspiracy period, defendants and their co-conspirators controlled more than 90% of the ODD market," the filing said. "Additionally, defendants and their co-conspirators belong to or control patent pools (naming the 3C DVD Patent Group) that effectively deter entry into the ODD market by imposing high licensing costs on required technology."
HP claims it overpaid for disc drives due to the price-fixing conspiracy among electronics heavyweights and their affiliates. The company says defendants engaged in a series of "integrated and overlapping" anticompetitive acts that included price rigging among equipment manufacturers, and exchanging confidential information from HP related to its prices, sales, disk production and bidding strategies.
The ODD makers also used trade shows and events such as the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) and the Optical Storage Symposium as "cover" to communicate competitive information and hammer out anticompetitive agreements, HP charged.
HP is seeking treble damages for violations of the Sherman Act, the California Cartwright Act and the California Unfair Competition Law.