On Thursday, August 26, 2021, United States District Judge Sheryl H. Lipman (WD Tenn.) issued an order in Fusion Elite All Stars, et al. v. Varsity Brands, LLC, et al., upholding the plaintiffs’ complaint in its entirety and denying the defendants’ motions to dismiss. In the case, the plaintiffs—All Star Cheer gyms and parents of All Star Cheer athletes who seek to represent a class of all persons who paid Varsity or Varsity subsidiaries for All Star competitions and/or All Star apparel—allege that the defendants, Varsity and the U.S. All Star Federation (“USASF”—All Star Cheer's governing body), monopolized the markets for All Star competitions and All Star apparel.
The Court’s decision found that the plaintiffs stated a plausible claim for violations of the Sherman Act. Specifically, the Court found that the plaintiffs alleged sufficient facts to state a claim for monopolization based upon allegations regarding Varsity’s 80-90% market share of All Star Cheer, the fact that prices went up once Varsity dominated the market, Varsity’s pattern of acquiring market share and then raising prices, and Varsity’s exclusive dealing contracts. The Court also found that the plaintiffs alleged sufficient facts to state a claim for conspiracy to monopolize based upon allegations of coordinated anticompetitive activities between Varsity and USASF.
Labaton Sucharow LLP serves as co-lead counsel for the proposed class.