Western Pennsylvania Electrical Employees Pension Fund v. Mentor Graphics Corporation, et al.


Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati represented Mentor Graphics, along with its former CEO, CFO, and VP of Corporate Development and Investor Relations, in the matter.

On December 18, 2019, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit affirmed the dismissal of a securities class action filed against Mentor Graphics, a company that develops, manufactures, and distributes electronic design automation computer software and emulation hardware systems. The complaint alleged that the defendants made false or misleading statements concerning the company’s financial projections and the impact of competition and semiconductor industry consolidation on the company’s business. The Ninth Circuit held that the plaintiff had failed to plead sufficient allegations giving rise to a strong inference of scienter, as required by the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act (PSLRA). In particular, the Court of Appeals found that the inference of scienter was not as compelling as the plausible inference of defendants’ confidence in the company’s financial projections despite these challenges.

On August 23, 2017, Judge Anna J. Brown of the District of Oregon granted defendants’ motion to dismiss with leave to amend, adopting the detailed findings and recommendations of Magistrate Judge Paul Papak. After plaintiff filed an amended complaint, on July 27, 2018, Judge Brown granted defendants’ second motion to dismiss with prejudice, adopting the detailed findings and recommendations of Judge Papak, and entered judgment. The plaintiff appealed, and the Ninth Circuit affirmed.

The Wilson Sonsini team that represented Mentor Graphics in the matter was led by partners Barry Kaplan (Picture) and Greg Watts and included associates John Roberts, Stephanie Jensen, and Jennifer Kendrex, and paralegals Diana Lopez and Naomi Pierce.

Involved fees earner: Stephanie Jensen – Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati; Barry Kaplan – Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati; Jennifer Kendrex – Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati; Gregory Watts – Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati;

Law Firms: Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati;

Clients: Gregory Hinckley; Joseph Reinhart; Mentor Graphics Corp.; Walden Rhines;

Author: Ambrogio Visconti