French and American Luxury Brands Litigate Delayed Merger
Dispute in Delaware, Tussle in Brussels
LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton of France used business challenges presented by the novel coronavirus to avoid a multi-billion-dollar merger with Tiffany & Co. of New York, according a suit brought by the Tiffany company. Tiffany says LVMH failed to take reasonably necessary steps to obtain regulatory approval of the deal, valued at $16.2 billion. LVMH continues to believe the merger will be authorized next month, October 2020.
Apparently caught by the surprise by the suit, filed in Delaware Chancery Court, LVMH intends to file a suit of its own in Brussels. The French company claims Tiffany’s distribution of dividends to shareholders during the crisis was irresponsible mismanagement of the operation, laying the blame at the feet of Tiffany’s chief executives and its board of directors.