Complete Jury Verdict Secured for Edgeworth Client in Antitrust Class Action
In 2009, plaintiffs first sued C&S Wholesale Grocers and SuperValu for allegedly agreeing not to compete for retail grocery customers in the Midwest and New England. An Edgeworth Economics team—led by Chief Executive Officer Dr. John H. Johnson, Principal Consultant Karuna Batcha, and former Partner Dr. Parker Normann—was retained to consult on behalf of C&S. Dr. Johnson ultimately testified at trial in Minnesota federal court regarding whether the alleged conspiracy caused grocery stores to pay higher prices than they otherwise should have.
On April 19, 2018, following the two-week trial, the jury returned a verdict finding that C&S and SuperValu did not have an unwritten agreement to divide territories and customers. The victory came after nine years of litigation and spared C&S from potentially several hundred million dollars in treble damages. Weil, Gotshal & Manges Partner Eric Hochstadt, who co-led the defense team along with Weil Partner and Litigation Co-Chair David Lender, thanked Edgeworth for its critical role in the outcome by stating: “The Edgeworth team…was instrumental in identifying, analyzing, and using financial and transactional data to expose the errors in plaintiffs’ claimed injury and $110 million in damages. At trial, Dr. Johnson powerfully explained to the jury why the model put forward by plaintiffs’ economic expert was flawed in numerous respects and should be rejected.”