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US court tells MEN to pay $2.4 m to ESPN

30-April-2004
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US court tells MEN to pay $2.4 m to ESPN

Distribution company Modi Entertainment Network (MEN) has been told to make a payment of $2.4 million to TV broadcaster ESPN. The order has been passed by the Supreme Court of New York. Accepting the counterclaim filed by ESPN, the court said: “It is undisputed that MEN stopped paying ESPN Software during the last four months of the distribution agreement (June to September 2000).” As per the distribution agreement between the two parties, the amount that MEN owed ESPN stood at around $2.4 million (including interest).

A lawsuit, brought by MEN, against various ESPN entities (ESPN Inc, ESPN Software India Ltd, and ESPN Asia) asserted claims for breach of contract and unfair competition, among other issues. While the court dismissed the advertising claims made by MEN, it accepted ESPN’s counterclaim related to their distribution agreement.

ESPN was in a five-year contract with MEN, which ended on September 30, 2000.

It was then that ESPN and Star Sports entered into a 50-50 joint venture.

Currently, ESPN and Star Sports are distributed as part of the same bouquet.

After its breakup with ESPN, MEN distributed Doordarshan’s sport channel for sometime, which too ended in a legal tangle. Currently, the group’s sister company (Cable Distribution Network) distributes Dubai-based sports channel, Ten Sports, in India.

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