FOX files US$46.4m counterclaim against Genting Malaysia

PETALING JAYA: The legal dispute between Genting Malaysia Bhd (GENM) and Fox Entertainment Group LLC, Twentieth Century Fox Film Corp and FoxNext LLC (collectively known as FOX) intensified as FOX filed a counterclaim seeking US$46.4 million (RM191.7 million) from GENM.

GENM told the Malaysian stock exchange today that FOX and The Walt Disney Company on Jan 22 filed answers to its lawsuit, but at the same time filed a counterclaim alleging breach of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing.

In addition to that, FOX is claiming a sum of RM191.7 million in respect of annual licence fees, guarantee amounts/royalties and travel reimbursements pursuant to the memorandum of agreement (MoA) dated June 1, 2013, as amended, as well as consequential damages, reasonable costs and other relief under applicable law.

The counterclaim was filed at the United States District Court, Central District of California, which is also the same court in which GENM had filed its lawsuit.

“GENM is in the process of reviewing the above with its legal counsel and intends to file a timely response. GENM will make any necessary announcements in relation to the above matter when appropriate or once there is further material development,” it said.

To recap, GENM is suing FOX and The Walt Disney Company for more than US$1 billion (RM4.13 billion) for terminating their contract to develop a Fox-branded theme park at Resorts World Genting in Malaysia.

The Fox theme park is a key selling point of the Malaysian casino resort group’s multi-billion-ringgit Genting Integrated Tourism Plan.

The MoA was amended on June 10, 2014 and June 9, 2017. Genting Malaysia was granted a licence to use certain intellectual property rights associated with Fox theatrical motion pictures in connection with the design, development, construction and operation of what was to be called the Twentieth-Century Fox World Theme Park.

On Bursa Malaysia today, GENM ended down 2 sen or 0.61% to RM3.26 on volume of 12.4 million shares.