nder the terms of the settlement, the plaintiffs agree to dismiss with prejudice all claims against all defendants, including the company and its current and former officers and directors, in exchange for a payment in the amount of us$ 2.8 million, virtually all of which is being provided pursuant to the company’s insurance coverage. Substantially all of the company’s costs related to the litigation will be reflected in the financial statements for the year ended December 31, 2006.
All defendants continue to deny any wrongdoing, and the parties agree that the settlement is not to be deemed an admission of the validity of any of the plaintiffs’ claims. The settlement is contingent on the satisfaction of several conditions, including the completion by the plaintiffs of limited confirmatory discovery and approval by the court following notice to class members.
"We are gratified to put this lawsuit behind us," said Rob Ziems, Executive Vice President and General Counsel. "While we have always been confident that we would prevail if the case were brought to trial, this settlement removes the burden and uncertainties associated with ongoing litigation, and for that reason is in the best interest of our shareholders."