New Allegations Raised in Ongoing Pitt-Lundy Dispute
The first amended complaint filed in August 2013 added that, in March 2011, Lundy's daughter began working as an account executive at Titan, the advertising company that has the exclusive rights to sell advertisements on behalf of SEPTA.
Before Lundy's daughter joined Titan, several local personal injury firms, including the Pitt firm, advertised on the exteriors of SEPTA buses, according to the first amended complaint.
"Less than a year after L. Leonard Lundy's daughter began working for Titan, an agreement was entered into among SEPTA, Titan and defendant Lundy, under which no legal service provider except defendant Lundy would be permitted to place any advertisements on the exteriors of buses," the first amended complaint said.
Since then, according to the first amended complaint, the Pitt firm and other Lundy Law competitors have been told either by Lundy's daughter or another Titan representative that they could not purchase advertisements on the exteriors of SEPTA buses.
According to the original complaint, the Pitt firm encountered similar roadblocks when it tried to secure contracts to advertise within the Wells Fargo Center and on KYW Newsradio during traffic and weather reports, traffic sponsorships and time checks.
In the second amended complaint, the Pitt firm further alleges that RTKL requests show Lundy's daughter has provided Lundy Law with "commercially sensitive" information about other firms Titan works with, including information related to those firms' advertising purchases, strategies, spend and copy.
The defendants argued in their Sept. 12, 2013, motion to dismiss that the Pitt firm "does not and cannot allege that Lundy has tied up all (or even a substantial portion) of the countless advertising opportunities that exist in the proposed market."
"There is simply no harm to competition when firms like Pitt retain hundreds or thousands of ways to reach their potential clients," the defendants said.
The defendants said the Pitt firm's assertion that it has seen a decrease in net income, annual fees and SEPTA-based referrals also fails because there are a number of potential reasons, aside from advertising, why a firm's financial performance might change from year to year.
"Furthermore, at most, Pitt's assertions about its declining financial performance allege harm to Pitt—a particular competitor—not harm to the competitive process," the defendants said. "Indeed, Pitt appears to be using this lawsuit in an effort to avoid competition. Pitt wants to enjoin Lundy from entering into advertising contracts providing limited exclusive rights because Pitt itself does not want to pay for such rights."