Proctor & Gamble and Vidal Sassoon have announced that a lawsuit claiming P&G had deliberated sabotaged Vidal Sassoon hair care products in favour of other brands in the North American and European markets has been settled to 'the mutual satisfaction of all parties.'
Vidal Sassoon brought the case against P&G in April year, claiming that fraud and breach of fiduciary duty, after the company had allegedly stopped producing a line of its products in favour of one of its own brand, Pantene.
Vidal Sassoon claimed that P&G had made this move in an effort not to pay 1.5 per cent royalties on the production and distribution of its products. After the law case came into play P&G suspended the sale of all Sassoon products in North America and Europe, but in other parts of the world production continued. Indeed, in the Asian market the Vidal Sassoon hair care products remain top sellers.
Although the products remain off the shelves in North America, P&G said it was committed to the line, over which it still has the production rights.
An appeal to dismiss two counts of the law suit by P&G was rejected by the US courts last month. Following this move, the trial was scheduled for October, a procedure that was avoided following concerted talks between the law representatives of each company.
At the time Vidal Sassoon had said that he ultimately wanted to buy back the licensing rights to his brand, a measure that P&G was clearly not prepared to agree to, given the strength of the brand.
Vidal Sassoon sold all the rights to his name and image to Richardson-Vicks in 1982. In turn Richardson-Vicks was bought up by P&G in 1985, giving it the rights to the Sassoon brand - rights that were re-negotiated between Sassoon and P&G in 1988.
Vidal Sassoon claims that the developments of the Sassoon hair care range have been used in the Pantene range, which in turn has lost him millions of dollars a year.