A Delaware judge is expediting the trial date for Tiffany’s (NYSE:TIF) lawsuit against LVMH (OTCPK:LVMHF), which backed out of a $16.2B takeover of the U.S. jeweler earlier this month.

“We appreciate the court’s ruling today to expedite the process,” said Tiffany Chairman Roger Farah. “A trial on Jan. 5, 2021, will hopefully lead to a ruling prior to the expiration of U.S. antitrust clearance on Feb. 3, 2021, and enable us to protect our company and our shareholders.”

Tiffany’s capital expenditures are capped until the deal’s closing date and shares outstanding are also capped, meaning a delay would prevent it from paying equity compensation to employees at year-end. Tiffany also can’t hire or fire employees at the level of vice president or above or enter into material contracts, including the signing of store leases, without LVMH’s consent.

LVMH has argued that a “material adverse effect” from the pandemic had hurt Tiffany’s business and it couldn’t complete the deal by the November closing date for fear of getting in the middle of a U.S.-France trade war.

“By my estimate, odds are decreasing that LVMH will successfully walk,” writes Bram de Haas in a SA article, Tiffany: Louis Vuitton Hasn’t Produced Original Letter Yet.


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