Beverages

Verdict: Vital Pharmaceuticals Must Pay Monster $293 Million

California jury finds maker of Bang Energy, CEO falsely advertised an ingredient
Judge's gavel
Image: Shutterstock

LOS ANGELES — Bang Energy might end up in bankruptcy after a California federal jury ruled Sept. 29 it must pay Monster Energy $293 million in damages for falsely advertising the “super creatine” ingredient of Bang Energy.

The case, which lasted a month, revolved around claims of false advertising and trade secrets against the company and CEO Jack Owoc.

The nine-person jury found that “Bang Energy and its CEO Jack Owoc acted willfully and deliberately in violating the federal Lanham Act by falsely advertising the health benefits of Bang. That decision puts both Bang and Owoc on the hook for possible enhanced damages, which could triple the award,” the USA Herald reported.

Vital Pharmaceuticals’ (VPX's) false advertising of an ingredient called “super creatine” cost Corona, Calif.-based Monster Energy $271.9 million in lost profits since 2015, a Monster survey found, the news outlet said.

As the second nine-figure court loss for VPX, the company is likely to face financial struggles. The supplement-maker's attorney acknowledged in court "that an adverse outcome could push the company into bankruptcy," according to the report.

In another case earlier this year involving the two energy-drink makers, an arbitrator hit Bang Energy with a $175 million penalty in a trademark lawsuit. The beverage maker was ordered to stop using the “Bang” name in 12 states. Monster attorney John Hueston said the award “recognizes that Bang has long competed unfairly in the beverage marketplace,” according to a Reuters report.

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