May 26, 2014 (El Segundo, CA) – Major online furniture manufacturer, Versa
Products, Inc., dba Thrive Furniture, has filed suit against San Diego-based
furniture manufacturer Joybird Furniture.
Defendants named in the lawsuit are Christopher Stormer; Joybird CEO, Joshua Stellin; Vice President of Joybird, Alex Del Toro; Joybird Principal, Andres Hinostroza; Joybird Principal. All were former employees of Thrive Furniture, created and operated by Versa Products, Inc., until resigning in late 2013. Christopher Stormer served as COO of Versa Products, Inc. for 13 years.
Joybird Furniture's website launched in early 2014. The suit alleges multiple product designs were copied and intellectual property stolen while the plaintiff, Versa Products, Inc., employed the defendants. Additionally defendants are accused of utilizing company resources – including embezzled funds and stolen manufacturing plans – to develop a competing company.
Papers filed in United States District Court, Central District of California, Western Division, on Wednesday, May 20, 2014, contend that the defendants breached employment contracts, copyright and trademark infringements. The plaintiff, is seeking to prohibit use of the Joybird name for advertising or sales purposes, website operation at the Internet Domain joybird.com, utilization of Plaintiff’s trade secrets and utilization of any asset acquired via the defendants alleged embezzlement.
Thrive Furniture is a mid-century modern manufacturer has a 35 years of experience and history. Under the direction of CEO, Christopher Laudadio, KT Human Care along with American Furniture systems, founded in 1930, was acquired in 2010 and combined with Versa Products to evolve into Thrive Furniture. Built on a strong foundation, the company has received critical acclaim for it's designs and it's eco-friendly manufacturing techniques. Customer loyal and design-centric, Thrive Furniture opened up a retail location on Beverly Boulevard in West Hollywood in 2013.
Attorney representing the Plantiff is Andrew V. Jablon of Resch Polster & Berger LLP.
The case is pending and listed as Versa Products, Inc., vs. Stitch Industries, Inc. dba Joybird Furniture, U.S. District Court Central District of California, Western Division, Case No. 14-CV-03855.