French Retailer Sues Apple over Unfair Competition

Apple has always been involved in various legal battles against different companies over different matters. This time Apple has been sued by the largest Apple retailer in France, eBizcuss. The reseller claims that the Cupertino Company unfairly competes by favoring its own retail stores with new product inventory and also by undercutting proposals to small businesses.

The CEO Francois Prudent of eBizcuss, which operates in 16 different locations in France, said that we saw a 30% decline in the third quarter of 2011 because of reduced shipments of iPad 2 and MacBook Air devices, reports a French newspaper Le Figaro. He further added that eBizcuss had been failed to get iPhone 4S supply for the fourth quarter altogether.

According to the legal claim, it all started back in November 2009 with the opening of Apple’s own first retail store at Carousel del Louvre, Paris in France.

Moreover, Prudent said that being a Apple reseller, we spend around $6.5 million to fulfill the requirements. He said, “Since 2007, we revamped our point-of-sale system at the request of Apple to meet Apple’s criteria.”

Moreover, the litigation also places blame on Apple for poaching eBizcuss’ business customers. He said, “The proposals submitted to Apple commercial enterprises are lower than prices at which we buy the equipment.”

The Prudent also said that he is a big supporter of Apple products and was one of the first who imported Apple computer back in 1977.

All over the world the Apple resellers have faced difficulties since the Cupertino firm tried to fill in a gap in the retail distribution of its products over ten years back. MACadam was a long-time Apple reseller that leaved out of business back in 2005 just due to supposed ‘bad behavior’ from Apple. Similarly, a reseller went out of business in Glasgow, Scotland in 2008 because it didn’t stand against the company’s own retail outlet in the region opened just a year ago.

Despite its countless growth, the Cupertino firm couldn’t keep itself from the litigations by disappointed retailers. The company was pulled into the court at different times by different retailers. For instance, MACadam registered litigation against Apple accusing it for violating contract and fraud back in 2003. While in 2005, a group of retailers jointly filed a class-action against Apple, accusing it for unfair and illegal business practices, violation of contract as well as misappropriation of trade secrets.

At the same time, the company has directed its employees to stay neutral when it comes to resellers and service providers.

If we go through the company’s employee guidelines, it says “Neutrally position the various channels through which customers can buy Apple products. They include retail stores, resellers, online Apple Stores, catalog resellers, web-based resellers, Apple telephone representatives, education channels, and government purchase programs.”

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