On Thursday, December 6, 2011, the owners of an El Segundo ad agency, Concept Chaser, received a plaintiff’s verdict in the amount of almost $33 million in their fraud and breach-of-contract suit against Pentel Corp.
The married couple, who owned Concept, sued Pentel, alleging that the company stole Concept’s marketing plan for the $2 HyperG pen. The couple claimed that the Japan-based Pentel Co. Ltd. and its American subsidiary in Torrance stole Concept’s idea to market the pen to college students through a “smooth writing” contest. In defense, Pentel argued that the marketing campaign was its original idea.
On Thursday, the Los Angeles jury, which included actors Lorenzo Lamas and Anna Maria Horsford, found for the plaintiffs and awarded the couple nearly $33 million in damages.