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Gillette Sues Ralston to Stop Commercials

May 11, 1999|Bloomberg News

Gillette Co., maker of top-selling Duracell batteries, sued Ralston Purina Co. to stop television commercials claiming its Energizer batteries last longer and showing the Energizer Bunny torching rival batteries. The suit filed in U.S. District Court in New York seeks damages of more than $75,000 and a halt to the commercials, which Gillette says are misleading and falsely smear its product, in violation of U.S. and New York law. Ralston based its claims on tests conducted for Popular Electronics magazine for its January issue, which Gillette claims are unreliable. Ralston officials couldn't be reached immediately for comment. Boston-based Gillette's stock fell 94 cents to close at $51.81, while St. Louis-based Ralston's shares closed down 50 cents at $32.13. Both trade on the NYSE.

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