When the National Football League retained me in the late 1990s as an expert defense witness in its extended litigation regarding intellectual property, licensing and marketing best practices issues with the Oakland Raiders, Holly House (Anti-trust and general litigator with Bingham McCutchen LLC) was my point person in the process which lasted into the early 2000s and resulted in a positive outcome for the NFL. It was good to have her on our side of the table.
When it comes to intellectual property, don’t mess with the NFL.
My work in the case was to build analytical support of NFL defense arguments as well as to draw on my consumer packaged goods, retailing and licensed goods experience when dissecting the assumptions and forecasts being mounted by the high-powered and court savvy expert witnesses retained by the opposition. Because the proceedings lasted as long as they did I was deposed on two occasions, approximately four years apart.
Litigation support and preparing for expert witness testimony are demanding disciplines, not always leading to winning outcomes. Fortunately, working with highly competent litigators in behalf of leagues and sporting goods companies, I have a highly respectable batting average.
This was not only a case of protecting NFL assets, their intellectual property and trademarks, but about protecting the revenue streams that flowed from them.