Intercontinental Exchange triumphs in $155m Black Knight Software suit


Intercontinental Exchange (ICE), a data, technology, and market infrastructure firm, secured a legal victory against PennyMac Loan Services.

In a recent arbitration, an arbitrator ruled that PennyMac engaged in the unauthorised use of confidential information from Black Knight, a subsidiary of ICE. This misuse was specifically related to the development of PennyMac’s Servicing Systems Environment (SSE).

The arbitrator’s decision resulted in a substantial award to Black Knight, totaling more than $155m, in addition to interest and attorneys’ fees. This decision highlights the significant legal risks associated with the unauthorised use of proprietary information in the FinTech sector.

PennyMac, a former client of Black Knight, was found to have incorporated confidential information from Black Knight’s MSP system into its own SSE software. This action was deemed a breach of contract concerning the handling of confidential information. Following ICE’s acquisition of Black Knight in September 2023, this legal victory reinforces ICE’s commitment to protecting trade secrets and confidential information under federal and state law.

Following the arbitration, a representative from ICE emphasised the importance of protecting intellectual property rights, especially in the highly competitive FinTech industry. The arbitrator’s ruling underscores the legal repercussions of misusing proprietary technology and confidential information.

In response to the ruling, ICE CEO Jeffrey Sprecher said, “This decision reinforces the value of the intellectual property that forms the backbone of our market infrastructure. We remain committed to vigorously defending our rights and ensuring the integrity of our products and services.”

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