Posted on Thursday, January 13th, 2011 by Germain Lussier
Do you know what’s cooler than $140 million dollars? Anything more. And that’s what Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss are trying to get from Facebook, more than the $140 million their initial settlement entitled them too.
The twins, who play a major role in David Fincher’s film The Social Network, were back in court this week arguing that they were swindled by their 2008 settlement. The film itself reported that the settlement the Winklevosses signed was for $65 million but apparently now its worth more along the lines of double that, probably thanks to the success of Facebook and their resulting stock options. Even so, soon after they signed the deal, the twins were so upset that they accused the lawyers who helped them sign that settlement of malpractice, and lost.
Now this week Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss, played by Armie Hammer in the soon to be Oscar-nominated film, were back in court and it doesn’t look good. Read more details after the break.
According to PaidContent.org (with a heads up from Indiewire) the Winkelvosses hired a huge team of lawyers to try and find holes in their 2008 settlement. What they found is that “proper disclosures” weren’t made when the deal was signed, mostly in regards to the estimated value of the stock. The Winklevosses say they were given one price while Facebook was well aware of a much better price that was created when Microsoft invested in the company.
This week, though, while back in court, the incredibly rich twins reportedly got little sympathy from the three judges they faced. Here’s what Judge John Wallace had to say on the matter.
The founders are pretty smart people themselves. They also had five lawyers from two firms sitting there with them. The twins also have a father, from the Wharton School [of Business at University of Pennsylvania], who’s very bright, and considered to be one of the top people in valuation [of businesses]… If you have all these people there to advise you, isn’t it a little difficult to say this was one of those things where they were taken advantage of?
Even one of the Winklevosses’s new lawyers, Jerry Falk, sort of admitted it was a stretch.
I agree my clients were not behind the barn door when brains were passed out. But the same is true of Facebook. You had sophisticated people in the room on both sides.
You can read a ton of addition details on the case over at PaidContent. But all I keep thinking is if the Winklevoss twins were at all bothered about how they were portrayed in The Social Network, they’re not helping that reputation in real life. Plus how much money is really enough?