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Norfolk County Council beats Apple in £385m iPhone legal battle

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Norfolk County Council has emerged victorious in a legal battle against tech giant Apple, with the settlement resulting in a payment of $490 million (£385 million) to resolve the lawsuit.

The class action lawsuit, led by Norfolk County Council, alleged that Apple’s CEO, Tim Cook, deceived shareholders by concealing lower demand for iPhones in China, leading to financial losses for investors.

The lawsuit was filed on behalf of a group of claimants, including investors who purchased Apple shares between November 2018 and January 2019. It centered around comments made by Tim Cook, who initially stated that there was no sales pressure in China but later downgraded the quarterly revenue forecast due to tensions between China and the US, resulting in a significant drop in Apple’s share price.

Norfolk County Council, administering the Norfolk Pension Fund, led the lawsuit as the primary plaintiff, aiming to recover losses incurred by investors due to alleged fraud by Tim Cook. The council expressed pride in securing the recovery for investors, emphasizing their responsibility as stewards of pensions relied upon by thousands of families and individuals.

While Apple has agreed to the settlement, subject to court approval, it has not yet commented on the matter. The settlement, if approved, would resolve the litigation and avoid a trial scheduled for later this year. Despite the substantial settlement amount, it represents only a fraction of Apple’s net income, amounting to less than two days’ profit for the tech giant, which posted $97 billion in net income in the last fiscal year.

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