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Lavoho v. Apple Inc.

United States District Court, S.D. New York

December 3, 2014

LAVOHO, LLC, successor in interest to DIESEL EBOOKS, LLC, Plaintiff,
v.
APPLE INC.; HACHETTE BOOK GROUP, INC.; HARPERCOLLINS PUBLISHERS, LLC,; VERLAGSGRUPPE GEORG VON HOLTZBRINCK GHBH; HOLTZBRINCK PUBLISHERS, LLC, d/b/a MACMILLAN; THE PENGUIN GROUP, A DIVISION OF PEARSON PLC; and SIMON & SCHUSTER, INC., Defendants. ABBEY HOUSE MEDIA, INC., d/b/a BOOKSONBOARD, Plaintiff, -v- APPLE INC.; HACHETTE BOOK GROUP, INC.; HARPERCOLLINS PUBLISHERS, LLC,; VERLAGSGRUPPE GEORG VON HOLTZBRINCK GHBH; HOLTZBRINCK PUBLISHERS, LLC, d/b/a MACMILLAN; THE PENGUIN GROUP, A DIVISION OF PEARSON PLC; and SIMON & SCHUSTER, INC., Defendants

For Plaintiffs: Maxwell M. Blecher, Jordan L. Ludwig, Blecher Collins Pepperman & Joy P.C., Los Angeles, CA; Eric M. Creizman, Creizman PLLC, New York, NY.

For Defendant Apple Inc.: Theodore J. Boutrous, Jr., Daniel G. Swanson, Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP (LA), Los Angeles, CA; Cynthia E. Richman, Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, LLP, Washington, DC; Lawrence Jay Zweifach, Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, LLP, New York, NY.

For Defendant Hachette Book Group, Inc.: Michael Lacovara, Samuel Joseph Rubin, Walter B. Stuart, IV, Richard Sutton Snyder, Sr., Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP, New York, NY.

For Defendant HarperCollins Publishers, LLC: Charles Scott Lent, Arnold & Porter, LLP, New York, NY.

For Defendants Holtzbrinck Publishers, LLC and Verlagsgruppe Georg Von Holtzbrinck GMBH, Defendants: John J. Lavelle, Joel M. Mitnick, Dorothy Ruolan Du, Sidley Austin LLP, New York, NY.

For Defendant The Penguin Group: Amanda Christine Croushore, Saul P. Morganstern, Kaye Scholer LLP, New York, NY.

For Defendant Simon & Schuster, Inc.: Yehuda Lev Buchweitz, James W. Quinn, Jeffrey Leonard White, Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP, New York, NY.

OPINION

Page 396

OPINION & ORDER

ENISE COTE, United States District Judge.

Two domestic plaintiffs seek recovery of damages from their foreign sales of e-books. They allege that the defendants, all domestic corporations, entered into a price-fixing conspiracy that injured the plaintiffs' ability to compete not only in this country but also abroad. For the following reasons, the plaintiffs are permitted to amend their complaints to plead damages in the form of lost profits from domestic and foreign sales of e-books.

BACKGROUND

These actions arise out of a conspiracy to raise the price of e-books. The facts underlying the antitrust claims are described in detail in prior Opinions issued by this Court and familiarity with them is assumed. See, e.g., DNAML Pty, Ltd. v. Apple, Inc., 13cv6516 (DLC), 25 F.Supp.3d 422, 2014 WL 2535113 (S.D.N.Y. June 5, 2014); United States v. Apple Inc., 952 F.Supp.2d 638 (S.D.N.Y. 2013).

The facts may be briefly summarized as follows. Five major American publishers and Apple Inc. (" Apple" ), which is also a domestic corporation, conspired in late 2009 and early 2010 to raise the price of e-books. This was accomplished by, inter alia, imposing agency agreements on e-book retailers. The agency agreements wrested control over retail pricing of e-books from retailers. The publishers then raised the retail prices for their e-books and sold the e-books directly to ...


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