AMD agrees to pay $29.5m to end Llano Lawsuit

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Advanced Micro Devices agreed to pay out $29.5m to settle a class action lawsuit its shareholders filed after a troubled Llano chip rollout. The class of AMD investors includes anyone who acquired shares between April 4, 2011, and Oct. 18, 2012, before the company had to take a $100 million write-down on inventory of its Llano chip.

The settlement, yet to be approved by Judge Yvonne Gonzalez Rogers, would put to rest more than three years of legal wrangling between the two sides. The suit [PDF] was first filed in 2014 on behalf of anyone who bought AMD shares between April 4, 2011 and October 18, 2012. Investor Babak Hatamian is the named plaintiff reports the Register; the class accused AMD of violating federal securities laws by allegedly misleading investors on the progress it was making toward the public launch of the 32nm Llano chip, which combined CPU and GPU components within a single die and was set to compete with Intel's Sandy Bridge line. Now AMD is pitching a settlement to end the case before it gets to trial. Under the proposed deal, AMD's insurers will fund the $29.5m payment and the chipmaker will be able to continue to deny it did anything wrong. The two sides say they will have more details on the specifics of the deal by October 9.

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The stockholders say they relied on AMD's claims that demand for the chip was strong, when in reality the company was experiencing severe supply problems that eventually led to weak demand and an inventory glut.

“The parties are currently negotiating the remaining terms of this agreement and will endeavor to submit to the court, on or before Oct. 9, 2017, a stipulation and agreement of settlement and a motion for preliminary approval of the settlement,” Friday’s notice said. AMD missed its earnings targets twice after the delayed Llano chip was released, and had to take the write-down on chip inventory in October 2012, court records show.

The Llano chip, originally expected to launch in 2010, was beset by silicon-wafer supply problems and didn't reach the market until 2011. AMD suffered its first earnings miss in the third quarter of 2011; executives said the delays and supply problems were “one factor” for the miss, according to records in the case.

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AMD agrees to pay $29.5m to end Llano Lawsuit

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