BERLIN -- A 1.96 billion euro ($2.6 billion) suit by seven hedge funds seeking damages against Porsche Automobil Holding SE in Germany has been moved to a cartel court in Hanover to examine antitrust claims against the company.
The case is part of a group of German and U.S. investor suits seeking a combined total of more than 4 billion euros over allegations that Porsche SE, which owned the Porsche carmaker at the time, manipulated shares in 2008 in a failed bid to take over Volkswagen Group. In August 2012, VW Group bought the sports car maker from the holding company.
The Braunschweig Regional Court ruled today to transfer the dispute to the Hanover tribunal because it can hear civil suits raising antitrust allegations, court spokeswoman Maike Block-Cavallaro said.
The plaintiffs in today's case added the argument that Porsche also dominated the market for VW shares and abused its position.
The Braunschweig court said at a hearing in April that it was likely to move the case because of the newly added allegations. The judges said back then that such a step didn't include any ruling on whether the new allegations have any merit.
The funds, including Elliott International, the Liverpool Limited Partnership and Perry Partners, had asked to move the case to Frankfurt.
The decision to assign the case to a specialist court may boost plaintiffs' hopes of getting a hearing from judges more familiar with the technicalities of financial markets, after the Braunschweig-based court last September dismissed two investor lawsuits.
Bloomberg and Reuters contributed to this report