A U.S. District Court jury recommended the award of an additional $25.6 million in damages yesterday to SCM Corp. for losses caused by Xerox Corp's monopoly practices in the plain-paper-copier market.
The finding follows an $11.7 million award already recommended by the jury. U.S. District Court Judge Jon Newman took the jury findings under advisement and will fix the dollar amount himself.
Newman said the case eventually could reach the U.S. Supreme Court.
SCM President Paul Elicker said the company was "pleased" with yesterday's jury decision. An SCM spokesman said the finding means the eventual award of damages against Xerox could total almost $112 million.
A Xerox spokesman said the company does not believe the jury damage awards will be made final.
The civil antitrust trial was one of the longest in federal court history, lasting almost 14 months. Newman told the jury both sides will file briefs dealing with questions of law regarding the recommended damages.
Xerox claims SCM could have reasonably avoided sustaining any damages. That question will be considered by Newman, who said it might be several weeks before he reaches a final decision.
Yesterday's recommended award of $25.6 million reflects SCM's loss of "net going concern value," what one source explained as the jury's estimate of the net value ot SCM of a plain-paper copier business at the end of the 1976 bad it not been excluded from the market by Zerox in 1969.
The Aug. 9 recommendation of $11.5 million covers damages to SCM for the exclusion. The jury also said on Aug. 9 that it estimated SCM sustained a loss of $23.6 million in profits by being excluded.
Judge Newman will award damages based on the jury's findings and on briefs filed by the two sides lawyers. $11.7 million in damages would be tre-Were he to follow the injury's recommendations, the $25.6 million and $11.7 million in damages would be trebled under federal law to $111.9 million. He also could award greater or lesser amounts, or even no damages.
SCM, a New York-based conglomerate which owns Proctor-Silex appliances. Durkee Foods and Glidden paints, had sought more than $48 million in damages on the hypothetical value of its plain paper copier business.
The company originally asked for a total of more than $500 million in damages when the case opened. But the potential awards were trimmed in a series of verdicts by the jury.
The trial accounted for more than 40,000 pages of transcripts and stretched over more than 200 trial days SCM estimates that it has spent about $20 million in legal fees since the suit was first filed in 1973, and Xerox's costs are thought to be higher-costs are thought to be higher.
Newman expressed his "most profound appreciation" for the jurors' work on the case. Lawyers for both sides also praised jurors for their diligence.
The case not only broke records for its length, but some of Newman's rulings could affect the course of future antitrust litigation by offering new guidelines on when a company is obligated to license patents to competitors.