European Court Judgment Impacts Luxury Goods Selling Online

PARIS — A judgment handed down by the European Union’s Court of Justice on Wednesday sets the stage for how luxury goods can be sold online.
The Brussels-based CJEU said in order to preserve its products’ image, a luxury goods supplier can forbid authorized distributors from selling goods on a third-party Internet platform, such as Amazon, according to certain criteria.
The court had reviewed proceedings begun in 2012 in Germany by Coty Germany against an authorized distributor, Parfümerie Akzente, with the aim of prohibiting it from distributing Coty’s products on, in accordance with a contractual clause.
While Coty Germany sells on Akzente’s own e-tail platform, some of the beauty firm’s products are also sold through via, and it’s the latter trade the company was looking to stop.
“Coty welcomes [the CJEU’s] decision, which confirms that the character of luxury brands necessitates and justifies selective distribution, whatever the channel,” said the company. “After years of uncertainty, this means luxury brands can determine how they are placed on digital platforms, and it is a clear ruling for the protection of luxury brands’ image, the defense of our teams’ work and the protection of consumers’ rights and information.”
Coty continued: “As a consumer-led company,

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