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Bridgestone Reaches Settlement in Parts Price-Fixing Suit

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Oct. 19, 2017—Bridgestone Corp. agreed to pay $9.36 million to settle claims in multidistrict litigation over an alleged price-fixing scheme for certain rubber parts, according to a Law360 report.

The tire maker made the announcement on Tuesday in Michigan federal court.

This settlement deal comes days after Ratchet+Wrench reported Bridgestone Corp. and Toyo Tire & Rubber Co. would pay $29.6 million and $36.1 million, respectively, to resolve allegations that they fixed prices and rigged bids in the late 1990s and early 2000s on automotive anti-vibration parts. 

The agreement would end claims by car dealerships that indirectly purchased rubber and metal parts that are installed in vehicles to reduce engine and road vibration.

The dealerships alleged Bridgestone had colluded with other manufacturers and suppliers to fix the prices of the parts.

The settlement class will include dealerships that since March 1, 1996, indirectly bought anti-vibration rubber parts made by Bridgestone or bought vehicles for resale that included anti-vibration rubber parts made by the company.

As part of this $9 million settlement, Bridgestone will identify for the settlement class's counsel its employees who were prosecuted by the government for their participation in the alleged scheme, who appeared before a grand jury in the Justice Department's investigation and who might have knowledge related to the agency's investigation, the filing said.

The tire maker will also provide data about its sales of the rubber parts to OEMs and other purchasers since March 1, 1994, as well as other relevant documents, according to the filing.

The tire maker has additionally agreed to stop engaging in any price-fixing activity as it relates to the rubber parts for two years.

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