Limited Brands, parent company of Victoria’s Secret, is being accused of selling cheap “knock-offs” of hosiery lines created by its former supplier Zephyrs.
A complaint filed in the United States says Victoria’s Secret continued to use images of more expensive hosiery designed by Zephyrs for a year after the two companies stopped working together in early 2011.
Zephyrs previously supplied the US lingerie company with Italian-made hosiery for almost a decade.
The lawsuit, reportedly valued at around $15 million according to Womenswear Daily, states that Victoria’s Secret continued to use legwear designed by Zephyrs on packaging and merchandising while the products were being made by a different supplier.
"Victoria’s Secret changed the product in the packaging but didn’t change anything else except Made in Canada on the back of the package. It used to say Made in Italy," explained Joseph Gioconda, a lawyer representing Zephyrs.
Zephyrs is asking for the recall of all products that it claims are incorrectly packaged, as well as advertising that informs the public about the issue.
The lawsuit comes at a time when Victoria’s Secret is making its first move into the European market. The company opened its first store at the Westfield shopping centre on the site of the Olympic park in London, and is expected to open a flagship store on Bond Street, the capital’s most prestigious shopping street, within weeks.