In a statement released earlier this week, NRZ entertainment announced that the lawsuit brought by Broker Genius alleging it had improperly derived its TickPricer product from Broker Genius’ AutoPricer has been settled. The settlement included a Permanent Injunction against future use of the product, and the payment to Broker Genius of an undisclosed sum.
This is the second lawsuit resolved in Broker Genius’ favor this quarter, following Price-Meister’s settling of a similar suit. Litigation of a third claim against Seat Scouts alleging similar misappropriation of proprietary product information is ongoing.
NRZ sent the following statement to TicketNews on Wednesday:
Broker Genius’ AutoPricer product is designed to help ticket brokers automate the pricing process for their inventory in order to maximize revenue while also minimizing the active need for the brokers themselves to manually update as the market changes. In all three lawsuits brought in the past year, the company has maintained that the budding competitors had been former clients, learning the workings of their product and then using that knowledge to build their own derivative versions and compete for its business.
At the time of its settlement with Price-Meister, Broker Genius issued the following statement:
“Although taking legal action is not our preferred course of action, we must use governing laws to protect our intellectual property. This case and those similar to it not only effect Broker Genius but all companies who rely on intellectual property and trade secret protection to further advance their technology,” continued the statement, signed by Broker Genius CEO Sam Sherman.
Seat Scouts owner Drew Gainer was the lone defendant to issue a statement challenging Broker Genius’ assertions that his actions were illegal at the time of the suits being filed.
Dear Customers, Colleagues, and Friends,
We started Seat Scouts less than 1 year ago with the goal of creating the fastest, smartest and most cost-effective auto-pricer and ticket management tool for our customers. With over 40 years of combined experience in the secondary ticket market, we have been able to identify inefficiencies in the marketplace and hone in on our customers’ needs and primary objectives to create a product that not only is cutting edge, but also is competitively priced. Indeed, it is our ability to compete on price without compromising the quality of our product that has separated us from other industry players.
As some of you may have heard, last week one of our competitors, Broker Genius Inc., filed a lawsuit against Seat Scouts containing patently frivolous and baseless allegations that we disclosed or improperly used Broker Genius’ trade secrets. We can say, without equivocation, that these allegations are fundamentally without merit and we have always operated our business within the confines of the law. We intend to vigorously defend ourselves against these vexatious allegations and are confident that we will prevail in doing so.
Make no mistake, we take these allegations very seriously and pride ourselves on the innovations and software that we and we alone created to offer our customers what many have said to be the best automated pricing tool on the market. It is customer comments like these that drive us to constantly refine our products and cater to our market base so we stay ahead of the pack, no matter what roadblocks may come our way.
While we are unable to comment further on the specifics of the lawsuit, it is public record that this is at least the third lawsuit this year that Broker Genius has commenced against one of its competitors alleging theft of trade secrets. In fact, after the first such lawsuit was filed, Broker Genius sent out an eerily similar email blast to its clientele notifying them of that suit, as it did yesterday regarding the legal action against Seat Scouts. You are free to interpret these facts as you wish, but in our opinion these lawsuits are less about intellectual property infringement and more about stomping out the competition to achieve higher profit margins for one company at the expense of the customer.
Finally, many of you have inquired about whether we will continue to license our Command Center product during the pendency of the lawsuit. In connection with the lawsuit, Broker Genius asked the Court to prevent Seat Scouts from “using or providing or making available, whether by sale or otherwise, to any third party the Command Center Video, product and services including providing further services to any now existing client or potential client using or training to use the Command Center product and services.” The Court specifically declined to grant this request. Therefore, Seat Scouts may continue to license its Command Center product to new and existing brokers without violating the Order, and we intend to do so.
Thank you so much for your constant support and continued interest in our company and the products and services it offers.