Four major Silicon Valley-based tech companies, Google, Apple, Intel and Adobe, have agreed to settle a lawsuit that claimed they tried to hold down the salaries of its workers and restrict hiring employees from each other. As part of the settlement, the four businesses will pay a total of $324 million to the employees who are a part of the lawsuit, which was originally filed nearly three years ago.
At the time, the 64,000 workers who were included as part of the case claimed that Google, Apple, Intel and Adobe, among other companies, had worked together in order to not actively recruit team members from each other. It also claimed that those same companies agreed to put caps on salary offers. The plaintiffs used emails that were written by Apples late CEO Steve Jobs and former Google CEO Eric Schmidt, where Schmidt told Jobs he would fire a Google recruiter for trying to hire an Apple employee, as evidence of the conspiracy.
Reuters reports that Google, Apple and Intel would not comment on the settlement. An Adobe spokesperson said the company would not admit to any wrongdoing but added it decided to settle "in order to avoid the uncertainties, cost and distraction of litigation." Three other Silicon Valley companies named in the original lawsuit, Pixar, Lucasfilm and Intuit, had already offered their own settlements.