Byron Allen's Allen Media Group divisions Entertainment Studios and Weather Group filed a lawsuit on May 20, 2021 against the McDonald's Corporation seeking $10 billion in damages for racial discrimination in contracting in violation of federal and state law.
According to the lawsuit, Allen Media Groups says McDonald's intentionally discriminated against Entertainment Studios and Weather Group through a pattern of racial stereotyping and refusals to contract.
The lawsuit alleges that McDonald's refusal to contract is the result of racial stereotyping through McDonald's tiered advertising structure that differentiates on the basis of race.
"This is about economic inclusion of African American-owned businesses in the U.S. economy," said Byron Allen, Founder/Chairman/CEO of Allen Media Group. "McDonald's takes billions from African American consumers and gives almost nothing back. The biggest trade deficit in America is the trade deficit between White corporate America and Black America, and McDonald's is guilty of perpetuating this disparity. The economic exclusion must stop immediately."
"As alleged in the complaint, McDonald's has engaged in pernicious racial discrimination in violation of federal and state law," said counsel for Mr. Allen and his companies, Skip Miller, partner in Miller Barondess, LLP. "I am confident the jury will recognize the injustice that has occurred here and award significant damages. We are looking forward to our day in court."
Entertainment Studios, a media company owned by African American entrepreneur Byron Allen, owns and operates 12 high-definition television networks that are carried by over 60 multi-channel video programming distributors, including Comcast, AT&T U-Verse, Charter/Spectrum, DISH Network, DirecTV, AT&T Now, and Verizon FIOS. In 2018, Allen acquired Weather Group, which owns and operates the award-winning cable news network The Weather Channel and the streaming service Local Now.
WEVV-TV is owned and operated by Allen Media Broadcasting, part of the Allen Media Group family of companies.