IGT settles long-standing DoubleDown lawsuit at a cost of $269m

IGT Plc has settled ‘in principle’ its multi-million-dollar lawsuit filed by ‘Benson Matters’ made against its former DoubleDown subsidiary. 

This morning, the NYSE gambling technology group announced that it had agreed to contribute a $269m payment of a wider settlement of $415m that will end legal proceedings that have been ongoing since 2018.

Acquired in 2012 for $500m, DoubleDown is the former Social Games and Free-to-Play (FTP) unit of IGT, which was subsequently sold to South Korean games studio DoubleU LLC in 2017 for $825m – as IGT reorganised its gambling units and made a commitment to significantly lower its long-term corporate debt.

In 2018, plaintiffs under the name of Benson Matters filed a Washington District class-action lawsuit against IGT and DoubleDown, claiming that the subsidiary had offered illegal online gambling services in breach of DC laws.

An arduous lawsuit had seen separate DC judges asked to arbitrate whether ‘game tokens’ offered by DoubleDown Casino should be classified as a gmbling interaction or engagement.

IGT’s H1 interim trading statement had notified investors that the company had accrued a $150m cash expense to cover the settlement.

The owners of DoubleDown Interactive have agreed  to contribute $145m of the remaining $415m settlement.

Subject to final agreements, IGT forecasts that it will accrue $119m related to the incremental loss associated with the Benson Matters dispute that will be reported as ‘non-operating expense’ in its Q3 update.

IGT notified that “all members of the nationwide settlement class who do not exclude themselves will release all claims relating to the subject matter of the lawsuit.”

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