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Lensmaker Transitions Can't Shake Antitrust MDL

Posted: November 1, 2011
By: Django Gold
Source: Law360
Practice Areas: Antitrust

A Florida federal judge on Tuesday denied a motion by Transitions Optical Inc. to throw out a multidistrict class action accusing the corrective lens maker of anti-competitive conduct, saying the purchaser plaintiffs' monopoly accusations were reasonable enough for trial.

U.S. District Judge James D. Whittemore denied Transitions' motion to dismiss the suit filed by a group of companies that say Transitions resorted to various anti-competitive tactics to keep prices high for its line of ultraviolet-ray-resistant lenses.

The lens purchasers' consolidated complaint "contains factual allegations sufficient to provide defendants with fair notice of the plaintiffs' claims and ... those allegations, when taken as true, state claims to relief that are plausible on their face," Judge Whittemore said.

The direct purchasers, who first sued the Pinellas Park, Fla.-based Transitions in August 2010, say the lens maker has illegally restrained trade in the market since 1999 by improperly tying and bundling discounts related to the sales of its UV-resistant photochromic lenses.

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