A new lawsuit from Monster headphones targets Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine's Beats By Dre.
As you most likely know, Dr. Dre became hip-hop's first billionaire this past spring when his uber successful headphone company Beats By Dre was bought out by Apple for a hefty sum. Dre wasn't alone in figuring out the recipe for success for Beats By Dre, Jimmy Iovine co-founded the line alongside him, and Monster also helped them design Beats By Dre headphones in the early stages of the company.
Now, Monster and their CEO Noel Lee is taking aim at Beats By Dre in a new lawsuit. The company states in the suit that Noel Lee and Monster were basically responsible for inventing Beats By Dre headphones, and that Dre and Iovine are committing fraud by "pirating the headphones away from Lee and Monster."
The suit also alleges that Beats "concealed" how active Monster and Lee were in designing and engineering Beats headphones, as well as generally educating Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine about the headphone business, from manufacturing to selling. Monster says Beats severed their ties with the brand, and then were bought out by Apple for $3 million-- thus while Beats made millions, Monster proceeded to lose millions. The lawsuit alleges that if Monster CEO Lee had retained his original 5% stake in Beats By Dre, he would have made over $100 million from the Apple/Beats deal.
Monster claims that in addition to conspiring to get rid of them, Beats damaged Monster's reputation for the development of other products.
They're seeking punitive damages. We'll update you as the lawsuit unfolds. Apple has yet to release a comment on the matter.