White & Case's Global Antitrust Practice's defense of Toshiba Corporation in a private civil antitrust class-action jury trial in the US District Court for the Northern District of California won the "Litigation of the Year" award from Global Competition Review (GCR) at the annual GCR 2013 Awards dinner. The GCR Awards recognize winners for their work in "outstanding competition law matters of the past year," and were announced at the awards dinner held on April 9, 2013, at which White & Case was the most nominated law firm in attendance. GCR is the premier publication for global antitrust and competition issues.
The trial, in which Toshiba was the sole remaining defendant, involved liquid crystal display (LCD) industry price-fixing allegations and alleged damages of approximately US$2.7 billion—2012's largest antitrust class action trial and the first US antitrust class-action jury trial involving the extraterritorial application of the Sherman Act to (alleged) foreign anticompetitive conduct.
By jointly formulating and pursing a novel "reverse whipsaw strategy" that used the other defendants' settlements totaling US$443 million against the class plaintiffs, Toshiba and White & Case upended conventional wisdom that the "Last Man Standing" pays the most damages. The jury awarded the class plaintiffs a tiny fraction of the damages alleged (less than 10% after trebling). The enormous settlements paid by the other defendants gave Toshiba a complete set-off against its much smaller judgment, and the court ultimately approved a nuisance-value settlement and vacated the verdict.
Partner Christopher Curran, who led Toshiba's defense, was shortlisted by GCR for its "Lawyer of the Year" award.
White & Case also worked on GCR's "Merger Control Matter of the Year—Asia-Pacific, Middle East and Africa," which was awarded to Nestlé's US$11.85 billion acquisition of Pfizer Nutrition, Pfizer's infant nutrition business. The Firm was counsel to Pfizer on antitrust aspects of the global merger in Mexico. White & Case's practice in Mexico City was also recently recognized by GCR as "Highly Recommended" in its April 2013 survey of leading antitrust practices in Mexico.
Additionally, GCR shortlisted five other White & Case matters for awards:
- Merger Control Matter of the Year – Americas: Fresenius/Liberty Dialysis, US
- Merger Control Matter of the Year – Asia-Pacific, Middle East & Africa: Toshiba's acquisition of Western Digital's 3.5 inch HDD business
- Behavioural Matter of the Year – Americas: FTC v. Watson Pharmaceuticals
- Behavioural Matter of the Year – Europe: Nexans and Prysmian v DG Comp dawn raids
- Litigation of the Year: Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan in antitrust class actions, US