Smoothie Retailer Files Infringement Suit Against Former Employee and Contractor
Green Crush, a retailer selling juice, smoothie and aguas frescas beverages, has filed a lawsuit alleging that a former Green Crush manager and a former contractor engaged in corporate espionage, asserting that they used the chain’s proprietary information and infringed its trademarks and trade dress to start a competing company. Green Crush, LLC v. Paradise Splash 1, Inc., No. 17-1856 (C.D. Cal., filed October 23, 2017).
The complaint alleges that the manager frequently asked senior Green Crush employees about “distribution operations, specific equipment, detailed drink ingredients, the design, placement, setting and layout of drink containers and cups, and the process and recipes used” before leaving to start a competing juice store. Further, Green Crush argues, the manager and contractor solicited Green Crush employees to work for them; allegedly, some of those employees asked “if the store under construction was a [Green Crush] store because it looked just like one.” Seeking disgorgement, restitution, corrective advertising, damages, injunctive relief and attorney’s fees, Green Crush claims trademark and trade dress infringement and false designation of origin under the Lanham Act, misappropriation of trade secrets, tortious interference with contractual relations and prospective economic advantage, civil conspiracy and unjust enrichment.