Mattel only gets $100 million

That's what a Riverside jury just awarded the El Segundo toymaker in a copyright infringement case against MGA Entertainment over the Bratz franchise. It's way less than the nearly $2 billion that Mattel had been looking for - and much closer to the $30 million that the MGA attorneys had proposed. Damages were awarded for contract interference and copyright infringement. No punitive damages were ordered against MGA. Last month this same jury determined that the original sketches of the Bratz dolls were made by designer Carter Bryant while he was still employed at Mattel. *AP has just revised the award to $100 million, matching an initial Reuters report. It's still way below what Mattel had been looking for, though CEO Robert Eckert is already tap dancing in a press release about how Mattel "has pursued this case first and foremost as a matter of principle." (Right - I'm sure that's how the shareholders must feel.) The jury's verdict, Eckert added, "is only one stage in deciding what relief Mattel will ultimately be entitled to for MGA's and Mr. Larian's misconduct, and we will await the Courtís final decisions on damages and other relief to which Mattel is entitled." Meantime, shares of Mattel are down 3.6 percent in after-hours trading. The stock has been sagging for the past two days because of signals that the jury would limit its award (MGA is privately held). Of course, this thing will be appealed to kingdom come.

Updated post

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Mark Lacter
Mark Lacter created the LA Biz Observed blog in 2006. He posted until the day before his death on Nov. 13, 2013.
Mark Lacter, business writer and editor was 59
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