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Apple resellers hire franchisee lawyers for suit

Barb Dybwad
Apple Store

Apple resellers are hopping mad. Why? Because the new kid on the block gets everything right from the horse’s mouth, and a growing legion of Apple retail stores are threatening to take away business.

The lawsuit being levelled against Apple now has five plaintiffs on board: Mac Accessory Center, Thomas Armes (formerly of the now-defunct Elite Computers & Software Inc., MACadam Computers Inc., The Neighborhood Computer Store, and Computer International. They’ve recently hired new lawyers who specialize in franchisee litigation to bring the case to court, where it is likely that all five suits will be collapsed into a single trial. The next hearing in the case is Jan. 25 in San Jose.

The resellers are claiming that Apple has tried intentionally to hurt them and help the chain of corporate owned retail stores Apple began opening in 2001. I hesitate to pass judgment in this case because I have no knowledge of the details of the agreements made between Apple and its resellers - perhaps they are violating those agreements. On the other hand, Apple’s retail outlets have seen explosive growth in sales as of late, and it makes sense that Apple would want to capitalize on that. Anyone have any thoughts on this issue?

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