Members of the BFKN Litigation and Antitrust & Commercial Competition Groups represented Louis Vuitton and Loro Piana in a victory in a putative class-action antitrust lawsuit filed in the Eastern District of New York, in which the plaintiffs alleged an anticompetitive agreement to control the wages and job prospects of luxury retail employees.
In February 2020, plaintiffs Susan Giordano, Angelene Hayes, Ying-Liang Wang, and Anja Beachum claimed that firm clients Louis Vuitton and Loro Piana, along with Gucci, Prada, Fendi and Brunello Cucinelli conspired with Saks Fifth Avenue to not hire Saks employees within six months after the end of their employment, unless managers of both companies agreed to an exception. The plaintiffs claimed that this alleged agreement violated Section 1 of the Sherman Act. In December 2020, the defendants jointly moved to dismiss the plaintiffs' amended complaint, arguing that the claims were barred by the four-year statute of limitations, and that the plaintiffs had failed to allege anticompetitive conduct or anticompetitive effect.
Last month, Judge Margo Brodie of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York granted the defendants' motion to dismiss in its entirety, holding that the statute of limitations barred the claims asserted by three of the four putative class representatives, rejecting plaintiffs’ argument that the alleged conduct was a “per se” violation of antitrust law, and determining that plaintiffs failed to plead sufficient facts to support a plausible inference that the alleged agreement had any anticompetitive effect.
BFKN's legal team was led by Owen H. Smith, Robert E. Shapiro, Maile Hitomi Solís, Connor T. Gants and Nicholas W. Laird.
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