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Costco Files Suit Against Yves Saint Laurent Entities

Costco Wholesale Corp. filed a lawsuit against Yves Saint Laurent Parfums SA, YSL Beaute Inc. and Quality King Distributors in federal court in Brooklyn, N.Y., on Wednesday asking for a declaratory judgment involving the sale of alleged counterfeit...

Costco Wholesale Corp. filed a lawsuit against Yves Saint Laurent Parfums SA, YSL Beauté Inc. and Quality King Distributors in federal court in Brooklyn, N.Y., on Wednesday asking for a declaratory judgment involving the sale of alleged counterfeit perfume.

According to legal documents obtained this week, Costco said it purchased 2,500 units of product purported to be genuine Opium perfume from Quality King Distributors for $87,500. YSL Parfums and YSL Beauté contacted the warehouse club retailer on Oct. 2 to demand that it stop selling the product because the beauty firms alleged that the goods were counterfeit.

Neither YSL Beauté and YSL Parfums or Quality King Distributors could be reached for comment by press time.

Costco claimed in its complaint that, since initiating contact, the YSL companies involved have not provided the retailer with evidence about the products in question. Costco removed the perfume from shelves on Oct. 11, after receiving a letter from YSL that included a proposed lawsuit. As of press time, no documents appear to have been filed by YSL against Costco.

Costco alleged in its complaint that Quality King is responsible for the mishap and liable for costs and expenses associated with the lawsuit, including any damages determined. The complaint asked the court to declare whether Costco’s sale of the perfume infringed YSL’s rights and whether Quality King is liable to Costco and to YSL.

This is not the first time Costco and YSL have been tangled in lawsuits. In April, YSL Parfums and YSL Beauté filed a lawsuit against Costco in Manhattan federal court for allegedly repackaging and selling cosmetic and beauty products. That case is ongoing.

This story first appeared in the October 24, 2007 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.