Skechers USA, maker of trendy boots, sneakers, roller skates and other footwear, is fuming mad at pop star Britney Spears, who filed a $1.5 million lawsuit against the company last Christmas. So Skechers is volleying back a multimillion-dollar countersuit within the next two months.
The mess all started when Britney accused Skechers of failing to properly promote her line of roller skates and other products (see "Britney Sues Skechers For Allegedly Skating Out On Contract"). The footwear company says it was actually Britney who skated out on the three-year deal, leaving Skechers' wheels spinning. "We did not get any value out of the money we gave her," Skechers attorney Daniel Petrocelli said.
Petrocelli insisted Spears has been in violation of her contract for well over a year. Although she was offered multiple designs and manufacturers for her line of clothing and skating accessories, she failed to approve them in time for Skechers to market the products to consumers in time for key selling seasons. As a result, the company lost tens of millions of dollars, Petrocelli said.
He added that for months Skechers told Spears she was in breach of contract and in November they informed her that they were planning to file a breach-of-contract suit. At that point, they say, she put together her own lawsuit and filed it at Christmas when no one at Skechers could be reached for comment.
"She attempted to jump the gun," Petrocelli said. "Her lawsuit is a legal maneuver to try to deflect her liability."
In the suit, Spears claimed it was Skechers that didn't honor the agreement to use outside businesses to create accessories for her line. She also asserted that the company used her image to promote and boost sales of other skate lines.
"Skechers' claims are ludicrous and without merit," Britney Brands attorney Jonathan Solish said in a statement. "This is a baseless attempt to shift the spotlight from Skechers' abandonment of their contractual obligations. We are confident that the courts will reach the same conclusion."