South Dakota To Receive $80,000 In Settlement with Shoe Manufacturer
(Pierre) - Attorney General Mark Barnett announced today that South Dakota has joined a nationwide $34 million settlement with New York shoe manufacturer Nine West Group Inc., resolving allegations of price-fixing. The settlement was filed today in conjunction with a lawsuit brought by the fifty states, D.C., and the U.S. territories. If approved by the Court, South Dakota is expected to receive approximately $80,000 from the settlement.
The states alleged Nine West Group entered into illegal agreements with shoe retailers to fix the retail price of women’s shoes between January 1988 and July 1999. Working with the Federal Trade Commission, the attorneys general uncovered evidence that various Nine West divisions, including Easy Spirit, Enzo Angiolini, and Nine West, had engaged in illegal vertical resale price maintenance, by prohibiting retailers from discounting certain shoes. Price-fixing is illegal under both federal and state antitrust laws.
As a result of the alleged illegal pricing agreements, state and federal authorities allege that consumers were denied an open and competitive market for certain Nine West shoes, and therefore paid higher prices for these shoes.
As part of today’s settlement, Nine West Group has agreed to pay $34 million into a settlement fund. The states will use their respective shares of the settlement to fund women’s health, educational, vocational, and safety programs. South Dakota has yet to determine how it’s share of the settlement will be distributed.
Under the terms of the settlement, Nine West Group did not admit any liability or wrongdoing.