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Jeld-Wen Investors Reach $13.5 Million Settlement in AntiTrust Case

After allegations by Jeld-Wen shareholders of inside trading and other antitrust violations by the company's upper management and board of directors, they have finally a settlement amounting to $13.5 million. 

The shareholders, led by the Board of Trustees of the City of Miami General Employees' & Sanitation Employees' Retirement Trust, Shieta Black and Jason Aldridge, filed a motion for preliminary approval of the settlement on Sept. 8 along with a supporting brief and declaration from lead counsel Mark Lebovitch of Bernstein Litowitz Berger & Grossmann LLP.

The shareholders are asking a Delaware district judge to give the first green light to the deal since it will provide direct monetary relief to Jeld-Wen and all its stockholders and because the settlement is fair and will eliminate any risks, delays or expenses associated with continued litigation.

If the settlement is not approved, the suit could continue for years, and due to the alleged antitrust misconduct, extensive discovery would be needed, causing substantial expense to all the parties, according to the brief.

Background on the case

The shareholder's most recent complaint, filed in April, alleged that Jeld-Wen's top executives and board directors participated in insider trading, allowed the company to engage in anti-competitive conduct and made public misstatements and omissions about the alleged antitrust misconduct. 

The shareholders also claimed that Onex Corp. breached its fiduciary duty to Jeld-Wen by selling Jeld-Wen stock while in possession of material, non-public information and while stock prices were artificially inflated. 

The shareholders' derivative suit is not the only antitrust action Jeld-Wen has faced in recent years. In 2018, the company was hit with a class action in Virginia federal court alleging that along with its peer, Masonite Corp., the two companies used their combined market dominance to fix prices. Jeld-Wen settled the class action in 2021 for $61.6 million.

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