A company self-dubbed as a jeweler to the stars is suing a competitor that allegedly induced a New York City retailer to temporarily stop promoting and selling the plaintiff’s products.
Los Angeles-based EF Collection LLC also alleges in its lawsuit that Sydney Evan and founder Rosanne Karmes videotaped the plaintiff’s collection to analyze pieces and create a collection to replace EF Collection’s display at the Bergdorf Goodman store in Manhattan.
The suit seeks unspecified compensatory and punitive damages.
A representative for Sydney Evan could not be immediately reached for comment on the Los Angeles Superior Court lawsuit filed Friday.
EF Collection was founded in 2010 by jeweler Emily Faith Goldstein, a 24- year-old jewelry designer with a background in art history, the suit states. EF Collection pieces have been worn by Jessica Alba, Jennifer Aniston, Angelina Jolie, Jennifer Lawrence, Katy Perry, Taylor Swift and Olivia Wilde, the suit states.
Bergdorf Goodman, owned by Nieman Marcus, began selling EF Collection pieces in 2014 that were an “instant hit” and the company soon became the retailer’s top jewelry vendor on the store’s fifth floor, where previously only costume jewelry was sold, the suit states.
Bergdorf was so pleased with the sales success of EF Collection pieces that it asked for an exclusive agreement, the suit states The plaintiffs agreed, but asked for wider participation within Nieman Marcus, according to the complaint.
Last June, EF Collections reached an agreement with Nieman Marcus to sell pieces online at bergdorfgoodman.com and niemanmarcus.com, according to the complaint. The plaintiffs bought a significant amount of goods in anticipation of significant sales on niemanmarcus.com, the suit states.
However, in mid-November Nieman Marcus took EF Collection off its website, leaving the plaintiff with a large quantity of unsold goods, the suit states.
In March, Bergdorf Goodman dropped its sales of EF Collection pieces, the suit states.
“EFC was stunned,” the suit states.
Bergdorf representatives explained that Karmes “threatened to pull her exclusivity with Nieman Marcus and Bergdorf if the EF Collection line were allowed to continue to sell at Bergdorf,” the suit states.
Bergdorf, while sympathetic with EF Collection’s plight, explained that Nieman Marcus’ president decided to stop selling the plaintiff’s pieces “in response to the threats of Rosanne Karmes and Sydney Evan,” according to the lawsuit.
EF Collection lawyers sent Karmes an email directing her to stop interfering with the plaintiff’s sales at Bergdorf, the suit states. Karmes replied that she had never heard of the plaintiff, the suit states.
After subsequent meetings with EF Collection, Bergdorf agreed to resume in-store and online sales of its pieces, the suit states.
A Bergdorf representative told an EF Collection representative that Karmes was on the fifth floor one day photographing and videotaping the plaintiff’s collection, mostly likely to create a collection of her own that would replace EF Collection pieces, the suit states.
—City News Service
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