Apparently, street corners and eBay are not the only places to purchase fake designer bags. Italian fashion group Fendi S.R.L. and Wal-Mart Stores Inc.’s Sam’s Club warehouse division settled a dispute over allegations that Sam’s Club was selling counterfeit Fendi bags and leather goods in its stores in five states.
The companies said Sam’s Club will pay Fendi a confidential settlement amount, and Fendi will dismiss its lawsuit against Sam’s Club.
The suit filed by Fendi said that Wal-Mart had not purchased its products and never asked Fendi if any of the items displaying its trademark label were authentic. In fact, according to WWD, when Sam’s Club was presented with the complaint, it initially balked at the idea of removing the products, maintaining they were not counterfeits but actual Fendi goods.
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"During this litigation, Fendi provided us information that the 12 types of bags and wallets specifically listed in its complaint were not genuine," said Doug McMillon, president and CEO of Sam’s Club, in a statement. "We accept this information."
Customers who purchased bags, wallets, or scarves with a Fendi label at a Sam’s Club can return the item for a full refund, the company said.
As much as Sam’s Club would like to offer bags from Coach, Kate Spade and the like…Coach said, "We want to be available at image-enhancing locations wherever our consumers choose to shop, including our own stores and Web site — coach.com — and select department and specialty stores. Over the past few years, we have streamlined distribution in order to ensure that it is brand right and to better control where our product is ultimately sold. As such, we have no plans to distribute through the warehouse retailers."
So, if you see it at Wal-Mart, Sam’s Club and Costco, chances are…it’s fake. Designer labels don’t shop there.
Sources: Rueters & WWD