Dieselgate: Investors File Suit Against Daimler AG

– Claims for roughly EUR 900 million in damages filed with Regional Court of Stuttgart by institutional and private investors

– Establishment of a model case for Higher Regional Court of Stuttgart to rule on imminent

KIRCHENTELLINSFURT, GERMANY / ACCESSWIRE / January 7, 2020 / On behalf of 219 institutional investors, the Tübingen law firm of TILP Litigation Rechtsanwaltsgesellschaft mbH (“TILP Litigation”) filed suit on December 30th, 2019, against Daimler AG (“Daimler”) with the Landgericht (Regional Court) of Stuttgart for damages totaling EUR 896 million. The plaintiffs include banks, capital management companies, insurance companies and reinsurers as well as sovereign wealth funds and pension funds from Germany, other Member States of the European Union, Northern America, Asia, and Australia.

The lawsuit is based on purchases of Daimler shares of stock (ISIN DE0007100000) made in the period from July 10th, 2012, until June 20th, 2018 (the so-called “disinformation phase”). The investors bringing the action claim that in connection with the Diesel scandal, Daimler violated duties under capital markets law. In particular, they allege that Daimler deliberately concealed the use of illegal defeat devices in the Diesel vehicles manufactured by the company, failed to disclose the risks and costs that this entailed, and misrepresented the actual circumstances to the capital markets. Over the course of the disinformation phase from July 10th, 2012, until June 20th, 2018, the price of Daimler’s stock fell from over EUR 90 to below EUR 60. The damages suffered as a consequence are the subject matter of the actions now being brought.

“Any issuer of securities listed on a stock exchange must promptly and fully inform the capital markets of any inside information. We are convinced that Daimler failed to do so, both in its financial reporting and in ad-hoc notices,” explained Andreas Tilp, attorney. “This means that the plaintiffs bought the Daimler stock at too high a price, and it is our conviction that Daimler is liable to them for compensation of damages,” Tilp continued. His colleague Maximilian Weiss added, “We believe the claims against Daimler are excellently positioned. Further institutional investors that have suffered damages by significant share-price losses have let us know that they likewise intend to file suit in 2020.”

Background

In September of 2015, the by now notorious Diesel manipulations by the Volkswagen Group became publicly known. Daimler reacted to the revelations by insisting that nothing of the sort had happened with Daimler vehicles and “categorically denie[d] any and all allegations of manipulation” in a press release on September 25th, 2015. Daimler’s CEO at the time, Dieter Zetsche, personally got involved and repudiated any suspicions of this nature in an interview he gave to the Sunday edition of the German daily Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, stating that “a defeat device, i.e. a function that limits the efficacy of the emissions treatment in an inadmissible way, is not being used by Mercedes-Benz.” Nearly three years later, however, the Kraftfahrt-Bundesamt (Federal Motor Transport Authority) arrived at a different conclusion and ordered a first recall, in May of 2018, of Daimler vehicles equipped with illegal emissions-cheating devices. In June of that year, the Federal Minister of Transport Andreas Scheuer announced that “the Government will order 238,000 Daimler vehicles to be immediately recalled Germany-wide because of unauthorized defeat devices. In Europe, a total of 774,000 vehicles have been found to contain the software.”

Thereupon, TILP Rechtsanwaltsgesellschaft mbH (“TILP”) filed suit on behalf of a private investor and concurrently filed an application for the establishment of a model case in accordance with the Kapitalanleger-Musterverfahrensgesetz (“KapMuG,” Act on Model Case Proceedings in Disputes under Capital Markets Law). The Regional Court of Stuttgart held this application to be admissible and published it by notice. “Since TILP subsequently created all of the further formal pre-requisites necessary for model case proceedings to be conducted pursuant to the KapMuG, we expect an order referring the decision on the establishment objectives to the court of higher instance (Vorlagebeschluss) to be handed down in the near future, meaning that the model case proceedings may commence already before the summer break,” Andreas Tilp, attorney, summarized the process. At the end of 2019, TILP had brought further actions against Daimler on behalf of more than 100 private investors.

For the Daimler Dieselgate claims, the TILP law firms once again are cooperating with the litigation finance syndicate of Therium/DRRT, which stands ready to provide funding also for the actions Daimler investors may bring in 2020. The consortium is also already assisting the investors who brought actions in the Steinhoff accounting scandal. In those model case proceedings, TILP is representing the model-case plaintiff before the Higher Regional Court of Frankfurt am Main. At present, the proceedings have been suspended to allow settlement negotiations to take place.

TILP has created a platform, www.daimler-claim.com, on which investors who have suffered a loss may register, free of charge, in order to obtain further information at no cost about the model case proceedings against Daimler.

TILP Litigation Rechtsanwaltsgesellschaft mbH
Andreas W. Tilp | Attorney
Einhornstr. 21 | 72138 Kirchentellinsfurt | Germany
Tel.: +49 7121 90909-0
Fax: +49 7121 90909-81
Mail: [email protected]
www.tilp.de

The obligatory disclosures mandated by Section 35a of the Gesetz betreffend die Gesellschaften mit beschränkter Haftung (Limited Liability Companies Act, GmbHG) are available here.

TILP Litigation Rechtsanwaltsgesellschaft mbH
As the representative primarily of institutional investors seeking redress under capital markets law, the Tübingen law firm of TILP Litigation Rechtsanwaltsgesellschaft mbH (“TILP Litigation”) is pursuing a range of actions brought in Germany for disputed amounts totaling billions of Euros. The firm is an affiliate of TILP Rechtsanwaltsgesellschaft mbH (“TILP”). At present, TILP Litigation is representing the model-case plaintiff in the model case proceedings before the Higher Regional Court of Braunschweig regarding the suits filed by VW investors in the matter of the Volkswagen Dieselgate.

TILP Rechtsanwaltsgesellschaft mbH – Pioneering investor rights for over 25 years
TILP is among the leading German law firms specialized in banking, investment, and capital markets law and is one of the most experienced in these fields. Since 1994, TILP has been committed to representing the interests exclusively of investors and has been doing so very effectively. The law firm has represented private and institutional investors, family offices as well as public administrative institutions in numerous large-scale financial proceedings before the courts. TILP enjoys great respect both with the media and the firm’s competitors: For many years now, TILP consistently has been ranked by its peers among the very top law firms serving clients in matters of banking and capital markets law. Nomos Verlag, the publisher of the “Handbook of Law Firms in Germany”, referred to the firm in the 2014 edition as the “leading law firm for capital markets law matters.” For more than fifteen consecutive years, JUVE, the legal-industry publication issuing the market survey “German Commercial Law Firms,” has ranked TILP among the absolute top tier of firms in the field of capital investment proceedings. According to JUVE, the law firm is “one of the leading law firms representing both institutional and private investors in disputes involving banking and capital markets law . for years now, it has been the first choice of claimants and . has shaped this field of law significantly.” JUVE reports that TILP’s competitors regard the firm to be a sort of “role model due to its exceptional professional competence.”

At this point, TILP has obtained more than 200 rulings from the Federal Court of Justice and the Federal Constitutional Court that are of fundamental significance in protecting the rights of investors in Germany.

TILP has a proven track record as a highly expert and experienced law firm serving clients in collective redress matters both in Germany and abroad. In Germany, it does so particularly in model case proceedings brought under the Capital Markets Model Case Act (KapMuG). When this Act was reformed in 2012, the firm’s founder Andreas Tilp was one of the nine experts involved by the Committee on Legal Affairs of the German Bundestag. In October of 2014, TILP prevailed on behalf of the model-case plaintiff before the Federal Court of Justice in the KapMuG case “DT 3” brought against Deutsche Telekom AG, and likewise won the case brought by the model-case plaintiff before the Higher Regional Court of Munich in the KapMuG proceedings against Hypo Real Estate Holding AG (HRE). In the wake of these successes, the Germany daily Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung referred to Andreas Tilp as “Mister KapMuG.”

Andreas Tilp has provided his expertise to, inter alia, the Government Commission on Corporate Governance as well as, on several occasions, to the national German parliament, the Bundestag. He advised the parliament on the Act to Improve Investor Protection and the Functioning of the Capital Market (AnsFuG), the Act Implementing the AIFM Directive, and the First Act Amending Financial Market Legislation.

SOURCE: TILP Rechtsanwaltsgesellschaft mbH

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