Jay Himes Completes Court Appointment as Trustee Overseeing Bazaarvoice’s Compliance with Federal Court Judgment

Labaton partner Jay Himes has completed his court-appointed role as monitoring trustee overseeing Bazaarvoice’s compliance with the Final Judgment issued in the Department of Justice’s case against Bazaarvoice. In 2012, Bazaarvoice, the nation’s market leader in providing online product ratings and reviews, acquired PowerReviews, its primary rival. The DOJ challenged the $168 million acquisition under US antitrust law. In 2014 after a full trial, Judge William H. Orrick of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California held the Bazaarvoice acquisition unlawful.

Reversing the acquisition, the Court ordered Bazaarvoice to sell PowerReviews. As part of the Court’s remedy, Bazaarvoice was directed to provide the newly-created PowerReviews with access to Bazaarvoice’s customer network for four years, so that product reviews from PowerReviews’ customers would be more widely displayed and competition more quickly reignited. The DOJ tapped Jay to ensure that Bazaarvoice provided the network access under the terms contained in the Court’s judgment, and the Court appointed him as monitoring trustee in July 2014.

In an August 28, 2018 order closing the case, Judge Orrick wrote “Each month for the past four years, I have reviewed a detailed report by the Trustee, Jay Himes, who has diligently and effectively monitored the defendant’s compliance with the Final Judgment. He has worked through innumerable complex issues with Bazaarvoice and PowerReviews with obvious skill and sensitivity. The best testament to his efforts is that neither the plaintiff, defendant, PowerReviews, nor any other entity has raised a concern to me about anything related to this case since he was appointed. I am grateful and thank him for his service.”

When Jay was nominated for the position, the DOJ noted his multi-year experience partnering with the DOJ to enforce the federal court’s judgments in the landmark Microsoft monopolization case. Prior to joining Labaton Sucharow, Jay served as chief of the Antitrust Bureau of the New York Attorney General’s Office.

Throughout his appointment, Jay was assisted by associate Elizabeth Rosenberg Wierzbowski.