Hermès attempts to circumvent AMF enquiry

LVMH today learned via a dispatch on French media service AFP that Hermès had filed a lawsuit with the Paris prosecutor ‘on the circumstances through which LVMH acquired shares in Hermès in 2010’. LVMH notes that the AMF, the French regulatory body responsible for market supervision, opened an enquiry into ‘financial information and share trading between LVMH and Hermès International’ on 5th November 2010. By filing its complaint, Hermès seeks to bypass the appropriate AMF channels without waiting for the result of the official enquiry and without determining the extent of the AMF’s findings to date. In addition, the filing carries serious and unfounded accusations about market failings. For its part, LVMH strongly reaffirms that the acquisition of its stake in Hermès was entirely legitimate and that unlike Hermès, it awaits the outcome of the AMF enquiry with complete peace of mind. LVMH has no doubt that the enquiry will determine that the Hermès allegations are false and serve no other purpose than to slander and unlawfully undermine another firm in the same industry. As a result, the LVMH Group has had no choice but to file a suit for slander, blackmail and unfair competition.