EBay calls on EU to change luxury brand rules

Sep 17, 2009

(AP) -- EBay Inc. called Thursday on the European Union to change antitrust rules that allow luxury manufacturers to choose who can sell their branded goods online.

Brand owners such as LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton SA and Richemont SA, the Swiss maker of Cartier watches, argue that luxury goods are valuable when they are exclusive and available in selected outlets - and not in an online free-for-all.

The European Commission is currently weighing changes to rules that currently give luxury goods the right to choose who distributes their products. It appears to support the luxury industry by suggesting suppliers could require online retailers to sell a certain amount of goods in an actual, bricks-and-mortar store.

EBay says such distribution deals "unjustly block the online sale of legitimate products across Europe" and lead to consumers paying higher prices.

It gave a petition signed by 750,000 people to the to ask lawmakers to press for reform. The petition says manufacturers should not be able to "insist that Internet retailers must have an offline retail store before they can sell online."

EBay has separately run into legal trouble with luxury goods and cosmetics manufacturers over the sale of bogus products on the site - with mixed results in different courts.

Last year, a French court ordered eBay to pay more than $61 million to LVMH over counterfeit sales. But in May, a British court rebuffed a L'Oreal suit that sought to hold eBay liable for the sale of fake fragrances and cosmetics. In February, also won in a German legal case brought by the Rolex Group over the sale of counterfeit watches.

©2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Explore further: LinkedIn membership hits 300 million

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

EBay wins court fight against L'Oreal in UK

May 22, 2009

(AP) -- A British court on Friday ruled that Internet marketplace eBay is not liable for bogus beauty products sold on its Web site, dealing a blow to cosmetics company L'Oreal's campaign against the online auction giant.

EBay, GM to start trial program to sell new cars

Aug 10, 2009

(AP) -- Hundreds of General Motors' California dealers will let consumers haggle over the prices of new cars and trucks through the eBay online marketplace under a trial that begins Tuesday.

3,000 Xbox 360s on pre-sale at eBay

Nov 21, 2005

eBay said Monday almost 3,000 Xbox 360 games are available for pre-sale, ahead of the official sale of the product at midnight Tuesday.

Recommended for you

LinkedIn membership hits 300 million

5 hours ago

The career-focused social network LinkedIn announced Friday it has 300 million members, with more than half the total outside the United States.

Researchers uncover likely creator of Bitcoin

11 hours ago

The primary author of the celebrated Bitcoin paper, and therefore probable creator of Bitcoin, is most likely Nick Szabo, a blogger and former George Washington University law professor, according to students ...

White House updating online privacy policy

15 hours ago

A new Obama administration privacy policy out Friday explains how the government will gather the user data of online visitors to WhiteHouse.gov, mobile apps and social media sites. It also clarifies that ...

User comments : 0

More news stories

LinkedIn membership hits 300 million

The career-focused social network LinkedIn announced Friday it has 300 million members, with more than half the total outside the United States.

Treating depression in Parkinson's patients

A group of scientists from the University of Kentucky College of Medicine and the Sanders-Brown Center on Aging has found interesting new information in a study on depression and neuropsychological function in Parkinson's ...