The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has instituted proceedings in the Federal Court, Adelaide against Skins Compression Garments Pty Ltd alleging misleading and deceptive conduct and resale price maintenance.
The ACCC alleges that Skins contravened section 52 of the Trade Practices Act 1974 by making representations in print, radio and television advertisements in 2005, in television advertisements in 2006, and on the websites www.skins.com.au and www.skins.com.au/ns from at least June 2006.
The representations concern whether Skins paid money to elite sports people to wear Skins products, or to endorse Skins products, and whether Skins products worn by elite sports people were always paid for with money.
The ACCC also alleges that, during the period July 2005 to May 2006, Skins contravened section 48 of the Act by inducing and attempting to induce a sporting goods retailer in metropolitan Adelaide not to advertise a 20 per cent discount off the recommended retail price of Skins products. The ACCC further alleges that in May 2006 Skins withheld the supply of an order of Skins products to the retailer because the retailer had advertised the products at a 20 per cent discount off the recommended retail price.
The ACCC has also instituted proceedings against:
- Mr Jaimie Fuller, managing director of Skins, for being knowingly concerned in, or a party to, the alleged misleading and deceptive conduct by Skins, and
- Mr Christopher Warhurst, director of Artipena Springs Pty Ltd trading as Warhurst Agencies, the South Australian agent for Skins, for being knowingly concerned in, or a party to, the alleged resale price maintenance by Skins.
The ACCC is seeking:
- declarations that Skins contravened sections 52 and 48 of the Act and that Mr Warhurst and Mr Fuller were knowingly concerned in, or party to, the alleged contraventions
- injunctions restraining Skins, Mr Warhurst and Mr Fuller from engaging in similar conduct in the future
- penalties against Skins and Mr Warhurst in relation to the alleged resale price maintenance
- an order for a letter to be provided to each of Skins' retailers, agents and distributors outlining the alleged resale price maintenance conduct
- orders that a notice be published on Skins' websites and that a notice be published in an advertising industry publication outlining Skins' alleged misleading and deceptive conduct
- an order that Skins cause a corrective advertisement to be broadcast on SBS outlining Skins' alleged misleading and deceptive conduct
- an order that Skins implement a trade practices compliance program
- an order that Mr Fuller and Mr Warhurst undertake trade practices compliance training, and
The matter has been listed for a directions hearing in the Federal Court, Adelaide, at 9.15 a.m. on 19 September 2007 before Justice Besanko.
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