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ICONIX BRAND GROUP, INC. filed this Form 10-K on 03/28/2019
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Three securities class actions have been consolidated in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York, under the caption In re Iconix Brand Group, Inc., et al., Docket No. 1:15-cv-4860, against the Company and certain former officers and one current officer (the “Class Action”). The plaintiffs in the Class Action purport to represent a class of purchasers of the Company’s securities from February 22, 2012 to November 5, 2015, inclusive, and claim that the Company and individual defendants violated sections 10(b) and 20(a) of the Exchange Act, by making allegedly false and misleading statements regarding certain aspects of the Company’s business operations and prospects. On October 25, 2017, the Court granted the motion to dismiss the consolidated amended complaint filed by the Company and the individual defendants with leave to amend.  On November 14, 2017, the plaintiffs filed a second consolidated amended complaint. On February 2, 2018, the defendants moved to dismiss the second consolidated amended complaint. The Company and the individual defendants intend to vigorously defend against the claims. At this time, the Company is unable to estimate the ultimate outcome of these matters.


In April 2016, New Rise Brands Holdings, LLC, referred to as New Rise, a former licensee of the Ecko Unlimited trademark, and Sichuan New Rise Import & Export Co. Ltd., referred to as Sichuan, the guarantor under New Rise's license agreement, commenced an action captioned New Rise Brands Holdings, LLC and Sichuan New Rise Import & Export Co. Ltd v. IP Holdings Unltd, LLC, et al., Index No. 652278/2016 in the New York State Supreme Court, New York County against the Company’s subsidiary, IP Holdings Unltd, LLC, referred to as IP Holdings, seeking damages of at least $15 million, plus punitive damages of $50 million, counsel fees and costs. Among other claims, New Rise and Sichuan allege improper termination of New Rise’s license agreement, fraud and misappropriation. On September 21, 2018, New Rise and Sichuan served an expert report claiming damages ranging from $15.6 million to $44.2 million. The trial was set to begin in February 2019.  Immediately prior to the trial date, the Court ordered a pretrial settlement conference to be attended by the parties and their counsel.  Following such conference and with the Court’s approval, on March 15, 2019, parties entered into a definitive settlement agreement resolving all claims asserted against Iconix in the action.


From time to time, the Company is also made a party to litigation incurred in the normal course of business. In addition, in connection with litigation commenced against licensees for non-payment of royalties, certain licensees have asserted unsubstantiated counterclaims against the Company.  While any litigation has an element of uncertainty, the Company believes that the final outcome of any of these routine matters will not, individually or in the aggregate, have a material effect on the Company’s financial position or future liquidity.  


13. Related Party Transactions


During FY 2017, the Company incurred less than $0.1 million in advertising expenses with Galore Media, Inc. to promote certain of the Company’s brands and for the rights to certain warrants of Galore Media, Inc. as compared to none for FY 2018.  The Company owned a minority interest in Galore Media, Inc.   The Company sold its interest in Galore Media during FY 2017 as discussed in Note 5.  Management believes that all transactions were made on terms and conditions no less favorable than those available in the marketplace from unrelated parties.

The Company has entered into certain license agreements in which the core licensee is also one of our joint venture partners.  In the case of Sports Direct International plc (“Sports Direct”), the Company maintains license agreements with Sports Direct, but in addition, during FY 2018, the Company entered into a cooperation agreement with Sports Direct that allowed Sports Direct to appoint


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