10 Dec Nike Is Suing a Former Design Director and Ralph Lauren Corp.
Nike Inc. has filed a lawsuit against, Matthew Millward, a former senior design director at Nike who oversaw the design of Nike Sportswear apparel, claiming he violated his one-year non-compete agreement when accepting a job at Club Monaco. Nike also sued Polo Ralph Lauren Corp, which owns Club Monaco.
In court papers, Nike charged that Millward, who joined Nike in Nov. 2012 and is now Club Monaco’s VP of men’s design, resigned from Nike on Oct. 6, 2015 and left with “broad access to many of [Nike’s] most confidential design and planning materials.”
The documents note that Millward “was intimately familiar with and responsible for” elements of the brand’s sportswear line, as well as its official “Medal Stand” jackets U.S. athletes will wear during the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. Nike states that “many of those products are still in the planning phase and have yet to reach the market.”
Nike claims Club Monaco’s line of activewear competes directly with Nike Sportswear products. Nike adds, “Despite notice from Nike, both Millward and RLC have chosen to continue violating Nike’s legal rights. Accordingly, to protect its trade secrets and other confidential and proprietary information, Nike has no choice but to bring this action,”
Polo hasn’t responded to the lawsuit.