Mississippi furniture makers sue over alleged foam price fixing
Furniture Today Staff -- Furniture Today, March 15, 2011
The suits claim that major producers of polyurethane foam used in bedding and furniture engaged in an antitrust conspiracy to fix prices and allocate customers from 1999 until the present.
Like the previous suits, the new action says that foam supplier Vitafoam approached the U.S. Department of Justice in February 2010 to report antitrust violations in the foam industry. Vitafoam was seeking to enter the DOJ's Corporate Leniency Program, which would reduce the penalties the company could face.
Later, the FBI and European authorities raided the office of some defendants as part of an investigation into foam price fixing.
Defendants in the Mississippi suit include foam suppliers Carpenter Co., Domofoam International, Foamex Innovations, Future Foam Products, Hickory Springs Mfg., Scottdel, Valle Foam Inds., Vitafoam, Vitafoam Products Canada and the Woodbridge Group.
Plaintiffs filing the suit are Foamco Sales, H.M. Richards, Houston Foam Fabricators, Legends Inc. and Prime Designs.
While the latest suit was filed in northern Mississippi, similar actions filed around the country have been consolidated into a federal court in Cleveland.
The plaintiffs are seeking triple their actual monetary damages with interest, and are asking the court to order the companies to stop any practices that violate antitrust laws.