4Kids has first right of refusal on all Yugioh properties as long as their contract is in effect. According to the courts so far, their contract is still in effect and the Japanese had no right to terminate it. So they would have had no choice but to deal with 4Kids under the terms of their contract, at least until any final appeals are decided.
It appears that 4Kids had already agreed to market Zexal prior to the lawsuit, or else they would have never had the materials to do so. Not to mention they wouldn't have had the materials to produce the dubbed episodes. When ADK and TV Tokyo attempted to market the show on their own, they were found to have violated their contract with 4Kids.
This sig courtesy of the dark and powerful Pretear.
American production company 4Kids Entertainment announced on Thursday that there is an amicable settlement of the lawsuit between 4Kids Entertainment and Asatsu-DK (ADK) and TV Tokyo over the license of the Yu-Gi-Oh! property. According to 4Kids, the licensing agreement between the three parties will continue to be "in full force and effect with 4Kids continuing to serve as the exclusive licensing agent for the merchandise licensing, television broadcast, and home video rights to the Yu-Gi-Oh! property throughout the world outside of Asia."
The lawsuit was filed by TV Tokyo and Nihon Ad Systems last March, accusing the North American media distributor of "underpayments, wrongful deductions, and unmet obligations" and stating that 4Kids owed the companies US$4,792,460.36. Last December, a bankruptcy judge ordered that 4Kids' license of the Yu-Gi-Oh! series was still in effect, after earlier ordering a stay that barred ADK and TV Tokyo from selling the international license of the new Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal anime series to other companies.
A year after the once mighty kids entertainment powerhouse 4Kids filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy (see “4Kids Files Chapter 11”), and just a month after settling a lawsuit over its rights to the Yu-Gi-Oh! anime property, 4Kids has sold its YGO rights to Kidsco, an affiliate of the Saban Capital Group (that rose to success in the world of children’s programming on the backs of the Power Rangers) for 10 million dollars.
Beast Keeper BOUGHT
Meanwhile 4Kids, having shed its most potent license, has signed a deal that will give it international rights to the 52-episode Beastkeeper cartoon series produced in Italy by Mondo TV, Starbright, and Ponpoko Productions.