French giant Bouygues is taking legal action against Morrisons over its £2.5bn petrol forecourts deal over the rights to operate electric vehicle (EV) chargers.

Morrisons petrol pump

Equans EV Solutions, a subsidiary business of Bouygues, a €13bn (£11bn) giant covering television to construction, is taking Morrisons to court for alleged breach of contract, according to The Sunday Times.

It stems from a 2019 contract signed by the grocer granting Equans the exclusive rights to install EV charging equipment across Morrisons’ 273 petrol forecourts.

Morrisons walked away from the agreement two weeks after announcing a deal to sell 337 petrol forecourts to Motor Fuel Group in January. In turn, MFG had the opportunity to install EV chargers across Morrisons forecourts.

Equans, which had installed chargers at 260 Morrisons sites, described the grocer’s decision to walk away as “arbitrary, irrational and capricious”, according to its claim filed at the High Court.

Morrisons has claimed Equans had consistently failed to meet target service levels for its chargers and said those failures caused it significant losses, for which it expects compensation.

A source close to Morrisons told The Sunday Times that Equans was using the MFG deal to cast its performance issues in a different light.

In its claim, filed in March, Equans sought to block the MFG and Morrisons deal. However, the deal was completed last month and cannot be unwound. The French firm is also looking for the court to affirm its exclusivity rights and rule it has not breached its contract with Morrisons.

The supermarket intends to file its defence by the end of May.