Louis Vuitton Suing eBay For $61 Million Due To Counterfeits

Posted Jul 1, 2008

A court in France ordered eBay Inc. (NASDAQ:EBAY) to pay over $61 million to LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton SA (OTC:LVMUY), parent company of Louis Vuitton, Givenchy, Fendi, Marc Jacobs, and Emilio Pucci.  Counterfeit products of LVMH were sold on the online auction website.

“If counterfeits appear on our site, we take them down swiftly,” stated eBay spokeswoman, Sravanthi Agrawal. “But today’s ruling is not about counterfeits. Today’s ruling is about an attempt by LVMH to protect uncompetitive commercial practices at the expense of consumer choice and the livelihood of law-abiding sellers that eBay empowers every day.”  The plans to appeal the ruling.

eBay also believes that LVMH is attempting to cut out the middle man and because they are uncomfortable with their business model.  L’Oreal SA, Rolex, and Tiffany & Co. have also sued eBay in the past for counterfeits.

The French court believed eBay was resposible for “guilty negligency” and for the “illicit sale” of perfumes not allowed through eBay as a distribution network.  LVMH also sued Google for $260K because of breach of trademark, meaning that Google had to stop displaying ads of LVMH competitors when searching for the company.

eBay is also facing a legal battle with Craigslist regarding the dilution of the stake that the auction company owns in the classifieds company.  Craigslist countersued eBay shortly after.  Stay tuned to Pule 2.0 for what happens next with all of eBay’s lawsuits.

[Source: AP]