August 8, 2011 (San Diego, CA) – An $8.6 million settlement between Fossil, Inc., plaintiff shareholders, and current and former officers and directors of Fossil became final today. The settlement, which was approved on July 6, 2011 by the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas, resolved claims against certain Fossil directors and top officers for breaches of fiduciary duty and other violations of law. The plaintiffs in the case alleged that Fossil officers and directors backdated stock options to coincide with historically low closing prices over a ten year period.
Robbins Umeda LLP, serving as co-lead counsel for the plaintiff shareholders, secured a settlement that included an $8.6 million cash payment to the company and provided for the implementation of industry-leading measures to strengthen the company’s internal controls and corporate governance. The measures include declassifying the election of directors to the board, instituting shareholder “majority voting” election of directors, and establishing enhanced stock option granting practices and procedures, among others.
Fossil, a global designer, marketer, and distributer company, specializes in consumer fashion accessories.
“This settlement is an excellent resolution for Fossil and its shareholders,” said Brian Robbins, partner at Robbins Umeda LLP. “The company received a substantial monetary benefit as a result of the settlement and is now well-positioned to reap the long-term benefits of stronger corporate governance and accountable company leaders.”
The case is In re Fossil, Inc. Derivative Litigation, case number 3:06-cv-01672, in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas.
* The firm name changed from Robbins Umeda LLP to Robbins LLP on January 1, 2013.