Monster Energy recently filed a lawsuit against VPX Sports over claims that Bang energy drinks are falsely advertised as being able to build lean muscle and improve brain function.
Monster alleges that VPX Sports lies to consumers with promises of Bang’s “Super Creatine” ingredient as being about to “fight depression and reverse ‘mental retardation.'”
According to the Bang lawsuit, the super creatine compound is “useless” when digested by consumers, unlike real creatine that is often used in sport drinks.
Additionally, Monster alleges that there is “no creatine in Bang,” despite the drinks being advertised as containing super creatine.
The company further claims that VPX violates regulations set forth by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) by making “unauthorized health claims.” However, this is not the end of VPX’s alleged deception.
Monster claims that VPX regularly steals information from competitors. According to the Bang lawsuit, Monster’s own employees are poached by the company with promises of high incomes and secure employment should the Monster employees bring proprietary information to VPX, including pricing data.
VPX allegedly hired a former Monster employee who was found to have lied about returning his electronic devices and proprietary documents. Additionally, this employee reportedly downloaded five USB drives worth of confidential information before his departure. Monster claims that this employee’s betrayal is only one example of VPX’s machinations.
VPX is also accused in the lawsuit of purposefully stealing shelf space from consumers like Monster, despite these competitors having a contractual right to this space. In fact, VPX employees are allegedly awarded for stealing shelf space from Monster despite the actions interfering with the company’s sales and contractual rights.
Together, these actions allegedly give Bang energy drinks widespread success at the expense of competitors such as Monster.
“Fueled by flagrant consumer deception and systematic anti-competitive business practices, BANG energy drink has experienced significant market growth,” Monster claims. “Monster brings this suit to halt these practice, and hold Defendants VPX and Owoc accountable.”
Monster brings several claims against VPX, including unfair competition, trade libel, intentional interference with prospective economic advantage, conversion, false patent marketing, and violation of several anti-competitive laws.
Monster released the following statement on April 3: “From fraudulent health claims to touting an invalid patent to outright theft, our complaint provides many documented examples of Bang’s false, misleading, anti-competitive, and improper actions. It is time that Bang is finally held accountable for its deception. We look forward to presenting all of the facts and revealing the truth about Bang.”
Monster is represented by John C. Hueston, Moez M. Kaba, and Steven N. Feldman of Hueston Hennigan LLP.
The Bang Energy Drink Lawsuit is Monster Energy Company v. Vital Pharmaceuticals Inc. d/b/a VPX Sports, et al., Case No. 5:18-cv-01882-JGB-SHK, in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.
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