NEW YORK — Licensing agent Mort Gordon has been awarded in excess of $300,000 in a long-standing dispute over a men’s clothing license.
This story first appeared in the March 10, 2008 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
Gordon, principal in TGL Licensing and MG Enterprises, brought the action against Alan Flusser and Marketing Management Group as a result of a tailored clothing license consummated in 2000 with Stein Mart Inc.
Judge Herman Cahn of the Supreme Court of the State of New York ruled in late January that Gordon was entitled to $300,631.46, plus interest of $36,310.84, for suggesting to Flusser that Stein Mart might be interested in licensing his name for clothing. Gordon is also entitled to 10 percent of all future net royalty income, according to the judgment dated Feb. 27.
The judgment is against MMG but, according to court documents, Flusser indemnified MMG, absolving it of financial responsibility. As a result, it is essentially Flusser who owes the money.
The lawsuit arose after Flusser contracted with MMG in 2000 to find potential licensees. Allan Ellinger, a principal in MMG, subcontracted with TGL Licensing. MMG was to receive 20 percent of any net royalty income and TGL was to receive one-half of that amount.
In a private conversation, Gordon testified that he had recommended Stein Mart to Flusser, who had coincidentally gone to camp with ceo Jay Stein when they were teenagers. As a result, according to Gordon’s testimony, Flusser contacted Stein directly and cemented the deal, which continues to this day.
Since MMG had done no work in obtaining the license, Ellinger said his firm was not entitled to any royalties. He also worked to effect a settlement between Flusser and Gordon, to no avail. As a result, Gordon filed a breach of contract suit against Flusser and MMG on May 26, 2006.
Flusser testified that “he did not recall Gordon suggesting Stein Mart, but he admitted it was possible he told Gordon that he knew Jay Stein from childhood,” according to court papers.
Reached last week, Flusser said the verdict was “disappointing” and he was working on an appeal that was expected to be filed this week.