Earlier this year, German media claimed that Eizo (Eizo Japan and Eizo GmbH in Karlsruhe) had blocked the business activities of IT company S-Cape GmbH. S-Cape alleged that Eizo had ‘poached’ its employees and instigated the betrayal of trade secrets. The former S-Cape employees denied the claims and said that they had ended their employment willingly, following a change in the company’s atmosphere after a takeover by a private equity firm in 2013.
When the case was first brought against Eizo, S-Cape obtained an interim injunction. The injunction aimed to prevent Eizo from employing the former S-Cape workers, or from contacting S-Cape’s customers.
In late June, the regional court in Karlsruhe decided that Eizo’s activities were not in contradiction of Germany’s competition laws. The court said that it was possible that Eizo had taken advantage of the former workers leaving S-Cape in the hope of benefiting from their knowledge – however, this is not classed as anti-competitive poaching.
S-Cape’s injunction was lifted and the claims rejected.