Federal appeals court upholds $101 million Ventas verdict

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A federal appeals court in Louisville has upheld a $101 million damages award in favor of the real estate investment trust Ventas in its lawsuit against HCP Inc.

Ventas accused HCP of driving up the price of Sunrise Senior Living REIT, which it purchased for $1.8 billion in 2007. In addition to upholding the 2009 jury verdict, the federal court in Louisville ruled that there should be another trial to determine if HCP should have to pay punitive damages, the Associated Press reported.

Ventas went public in January 2007 with a bid to buy Sunrise. Shortly afterward, HCP submitted a higher bid, at $18 per share, but put several conditions on the purchase. Ventas then increased its original bid and subsequently closed the deal. But it claimed HCP had artificially driven up the price of a company it never intended to purchase.
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