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Firm Scores Major Win for SISAMEX in High-Stakes Case

February 8, 2017

On February 7, 2017, the Firm secured a significant victory for our client, Sistemas Automotrices de Mexico S.A. de C.V. (“SISAMEX”), a Mexican joint venture that manufactures and distributes parts for large commercial trucks. A judge in the Northern District of Illinois granted summary judgment on the central issue in the bet-the-company case, finding that Meritor Heavy Vehicle Systems, LLC (“Meritor”) breached its commitments by wrongfully thwarting SISAMEX’s exercise of its right to be the exclusive manufacturer of Meritor products and components thereof for sale to original equipment manufacturers in Mexico.

As the records showed, Meritor intentionally breached the parties’ agreement, beginning as early as 2013, in an attempt to transition the manufacture of those products to Meritor’s facility in Mexico. The Court rejected Meritor’s arguments attempting to rationalize its conduct as (i) contrary to over a decade of documentation, including Meritor’s myriad internal admissions, (ii) contradicted by the plain text of the parties’ agreements, and (iii) irreconcilable with the parties’ history of performance, as well the positions Meritor took throughout the litigation. The Court noted that Meritor offered no plausible explanation for advancing at summary judgment for the first time arguments that it never previously raised. As the Court correctly concluded, “no reasonable fact finder could credit Meritor’s position based on the evidence in the case.”

To read press on the win, click here.