Roger Dubuis S.A., Helvetia Dispute Ending U.S. Distribution Contract

A top Swiss luxury watch brand and its North American distributor were in litigation early this year over whether the brand can cancel its contract with the distributor. Each accuses the other of alleged product shortages and supposedly diverting watches to the gray market. Roger Dubuis S.A., based near Geneva, says it ended its contract with Helvetia Time Corp., doing business as Roger Dubuis North America, in November for “many breaches of contract.” However, the U.S. firm, based in Wilkes-Barre, Pa., denies that and contends the watchmaker actually wants to take over the business in America. RDNA has taken legal action here and in Switzerland to block what its president Alex J. Nobile calls the “unjust termination.” The contract runs through May 2009, with an option to renew until 2014. RDNA’s bid for an injunction to prevent the termination and also to prevent alleged

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