Health and beauty giant Boots is being sued for £5m in a legal case centred on changes to its childrenswear offer.
A claim lodged at the High Court by businesses controlled by retail entrepreneur John Shannon alleges wrongful termination and breach of a trading agreement relating to the Mini Mode kids’ clothing range.
According to the court documents, Boots considered buying Mini Mode for £4.5m in 2009, but no deal was done. In November that year Boots gave notice oftermination of its contract with Mini Mode’s supplier – a shorter period than the claimants says that they were entitled to – and in
September 2010 the Mini Club range was introduced.
The documentation states that the “best current estimate” of the loss to the claimants is £4.9m and requests an injunction to “restrain” the alleged passing off.
A spokeswoman for Boots UK said the retailer had no comment to make regarding the case other than that it is believed to be “without merit”.
The childrenswear market generally is becoming more competitive. Mothercare has come under pressure from new entrants such as the supermarkets. Morrisons intends to open stores for its Kiddicare brand.