MCKENNON LAW GROUP PC OBTAINS $3.93 MILLION DAMAGE AWARD FOR CLIENTS IN BUSINESS DISPUTE OVER INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY AND LICENSING RIGHTS
In January 2010, McKennon Law Group PC was approached by weight loss supplement company TriPharma, LLC, about a dispute involving its exclusive rights to advertise, market and sell a revolutionary patented and clinically studied weight loss product that was manufactured by San Diego based company Imagenetix, Inc. TriPharma discovered Imagenetix’s multiple breaches of its exclusive license agreement with Imagenetix which had all but destroyed its ability to sell its weight loss product, destroyed much of the goodwill built up for the product, and was threatening to destroy the years of hard work put in developing TriPharma’s one-of-a-kind weight loss beverage, which was due to hit the stores in a few short months. Shortly thereafter, Imagenetix wrongfully terminated TriPharma’s exclusive license and began to sell product directly to TriPharma’s customers.
The attorneys at McKennon Law Group PC LLP took immediate action and filed lawsuits in federal court against the companies which were infringing on TriPharma’s exclusive license through product sales of their own, and filed claims in JAMS arbitration against Imagenetix for, among other things, fraud, breach of contract, and injunctive relief, seeking damages as well as reinstatement of the exclusive license agreement
After aggressive discovery and motion practice in the JAMS arbitration for over a year-and-a-half, and after a fourteen (14) day arbitration hearing, TriPharma prevailed and was awarded $2.1 million in compensatory damages, pre and post-judgment interest, and its attorneys’ fees and costs in both prosecuting TriPharma’s claims as well as successfully defending frivolous claims asserted against its CEO. The McKennon Law Group PC LLP attorneys were also able to prove TriPharma’s claim of promissory fraud and obtained punitive damages in the amount of $250,000, as well as personal, and joint and several liability against Imagenetix CEO William Spencer. The total monetary award amounted to over $3.93 million.
Even more significantly, the McKennon Law Group PC LLP attorneys were able to obtain the injunctive relief they fought for so vigorously on behalf of TriPharma. The arbitrator reinstated TriPharma’s exclusive license agreement, extended the term of the agreement, provided a six month abeyance of minimum obligations so that TriPharma could get its business back up and running, and enjoined Imagenetix from selling its weight loss product, or any other weight loss product based on the patent or clinical studies, to any other company. The award effectively won back the rights that TriPharma had bargained for and which had been stolen by Imagenetix through its various activities relating to the sales and distribution of the product.
The victory for TriPharma and the McKennon Law Group PC LLP law firm was a complete success. Not only did TriPharma recoup the ability to conduct business, but TriPharma and its CEO were vindicated and awarded significant monetary compensation for the fraud perpetrated on him and his company. In issuing the award, the arbitrator gave particular mention to McKennon Law Group PC partner Robert J. McKennon:
McKennon l Schindler achieved substantial success in this litigation and its chief trial attorney Robert McKennon demonstrated exceptional skill in cross-examining [Imagenetix’s CEO and other employees]. Indeed, those examinations exposed the lack of credibility of those witnesses, which was a decisive factor in the Arbitrator’s findings and rulings.
Robert J. McKennon and Reid A. Winthrop tried the case on behalf of TriPharma.