Samsung, Micron and Hynix are sued for pricing DRAMs

Apparently, Samsung has not always played fair when it comes to selling his DRAMs. A class-action lawsuit alleges that the company, along with two other major manufacturers, was deliberately limiting supplies of DRAM chips to inflate prices.

Samsung, Micron and Hynix are sued for pricing DRAMs

Samsung, Micron and Hynix are sued for pricing DRAMs

The lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court by the law firm Hagens Berman on behalf of U.S. consumers who purchased smartphones and computer products using DRAMs between July 1, 2016 and February 1, 2017.

The lawsuit cites an investigation by Hagens Berman’s antitrust lawyers who claim to have discovered that Samsung, Hynix and Micron, which collectively account for 96% of the world DRAM market, colluded to limit the supply of the chips, resulting in “illegally inflated prices”. It was only when the Chinese government announced an investigation into the situation in 2017 that the “behaviour abruptly changed,” the file says.

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Demand for DRAMs increased by 77% in 2017, after a decrease of 8% in 2016. The price of chips rose 47% over the set period of time, according to the law firm, the highest in nearly 30 years. As a result, revenues from DRAM sales more than doubled for the three companies.

“What we have discovered in the DRAM market is a classic antitrust and pricing scheme, where a small number of leading corporations have the largest share of the market,” said Hagens Berman managing partner Steve Berman. “Instead of following the rules, Samsung, Micron and Hynix chose to put consumers on the spot, strangling the market for more profit.

Hagens Berman already made a similar claim in 2006 against 18 companies for pricing DRAMs, as a result of which they settled for $300 million. Everything seems to indicate that this new lawsuit will be a multimillionaire.