The lawsuit seeks to enjoin the defendants’ anticompetitive conduct in preventing Run Gum and numerous other sponsors from sponsoring track & field athletes at the upcoming July 2016 Olympic Team Trials – Track & Field in exchange for sponsor identification on athlete apparel. At present, the 2016 Olympic Trials Uniform Advertising and Logo Regulations permit track & field athletes to wear sponsor logos of only pre-approved athletic-apparel and athletic-equipment manufacturers.
The complaint, which seeks injunctive relief, alleges that: (1) consistent with its mission of supporting athletes, Run Gum wishes to sponsor track & field athletes at the upcoming Olympic Trials in exchange for sponsor identification on the athletes’ apparel, subject to generally applicable limitations on size, quantity, and placement; (2) the defendants and their co-conspirators have jointly agreed to exclude Run Gum and various other businesses from sponsoring individual athletes at the upcoming 2016 Olympic Trials; (3) the 2016 Olympic Trials Uniform Advertising and Logo Regulations threaten economic injury to Run Gum—and to athletes who will be deprived of significant competition among sponsors; and (4) the defendants and their co-conspirators’ attempts to pick and choose eligible market participants, while excluding others, is a group boycott that violates the antitrust laws.
Hausfeld partner Sathya Gosselin explained, “The defendants’ attempts to shut out Run Gum and other sponsors from the upcoming Olympic Trials are unfair—and ultimately harm athletes, who rely on sponsorships to fund their training activities and make a living. This important case is emblematic of our firm’s longstanding commitment to athletes, businesses that support athletes, and economic fairness in all sports. We look forward to our day in court.”
Hausfeld attorneys working on this case are Michael Hausfeld, Sathya Gosselin, Michael Lehmann, Bonny Sweeney, and Swathi Bojedla.
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About Run Gum
Run Gum is a sports supplement brand selling performance chewing gum and is headquartered in Eugene, Oregon. They believe performance matters and are on a mission to help athletes maximize their performance in daily training and competition. Founded in October 2014, Run Gum is sold in over 200 stores nationwide as well as on their website, http://getrungum.com.