Class action lawsuit filed against Birkin handbag maker Hermes


The luxury France-based brand Hermes on Tuesday had a proposed class action lawsuit lodged against it.

The lawsuit centered on the brand’s coveted Birkin handbags and took issue with how the company allegedly goes about selling them to customers.

Hermes has been selling Birkin bags since the ’80s. The bags, made of real leather, can carry eye-popping price tags upwards of $10,000, according to reports.

In the suit, it leveled allegations against Hermes of breaching a federal antitrust law as well as California antitrust and unfair competition laws through its purported “unlawful practice of tying the purchase of Defendants’ popular Birkin bags to the purchase of other Defendant’s luxury clothing and accessory items.”

FOX Business reached out to a Hermes representative for comment on the suit.

The lawsuit asked the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California to certify it as a class action. It also wants an injunction against Hermes for allegedly engaging in further “tying,” damages and other relief, according to the filing. 

Hermes logo

Two plaintiffs, both of whom live in California, brought the complaint against the luxury brand. Both claimed to have had experiences in which they were told they needed to splash out on other Hermes items to potentially get the chance to acquire Birkins, per the lawsuit.


It alleged Hermes was “able to use their sales associate’s to implement Defendants’ illegal tying arrangement” through a compensation structure that purportedly involves employee commissions on non-Birkin merchandise.

The suit also claimed Hermes was “able to effectively increase the price of Birkin handbags and, thus, the profits that Defendants earn from Birkin handbags” though allegedly tying sales of the bags to other items.


In 2023, Business of Fashion reported Hermes said it “strictly prohibits any sales of certain products as a condition to the purchase of others.”

On top of Birkin handbags, the French brand also sells a slew of other merchandise, such as clothing, scarves, shoes, jewelry and belts. It has equestrian origins.

Hermes had a market capitalization of 252.72 billion euros as of Wednesday afternoon.

Read the full article here


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