UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
BEFORE FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION
COMMISSIONERS: Robert Pitofsky, Chairman
Mary L. Azcuenaga
Janet D. Steiger
Roscoe B. Starek, III
Christine A. Varney
_______________________________ ) In the Matter of ) ) DOCKET NO. C-3682 Precision Moulding Co., Inc., ) a corporation. ) DECISION ) AND _______________________________) ORDER
The Federal Trade Commission ("Commission"), having initiated an investigation of certain acts and practices of the respondent named in the caption hereof, and the respondent having been furnished thereafter with a copy of a draft of complaint which the Bureau of Competition proposed to present to the Commission for its consideration and which, if issued by the Commission, would charge the respondent with violation of the Federal Trade Commission Act; and
The respondent, their attorney, and counsel for the Commission having thereafter executed an agreement containing a consent order, an admission by respondent of all the jurisdictional facts set forth in the aforesaid draft of complaint, a statement that the signing of said agreement is for settlement purposes only and does not constitute an admission by respondent that the law has been violated as alleged in such complaint, and waivers and other provisions as required by the Commission's Rules; and
The Commission having thereafter considered the matter and having determined that it had reason to believe that the respondent has violated the said Act, and that a complaint should issue stating its charges in that respect, and having thereupon accepted the executed consent agreement and placed such agreement on the public record for a period of sixty (60) days, now in further conformity with the procedure described in 2.34 of its Rules, the Commission hereby issues its complaint, makes the following jurisdictional findings and enters the following order:
1. Respondent Precision Moulding Co., Inc. is a corporation organized, existing and doing business under and by virtue of the laws of the State of California, with its office and principal place of business located at 3308 Cyclone Court, Cottonwood, California 96022, and its mailing address at P.O. Box 406, Cottonwood, California 96022.
2. The Federal Trade Commission has jurisdiction of the subject matter of this proceeding and of the respondent, and the proceeding is in the public interest.
For purposes of this order, the following definitions shall apply:
A. "Respondent" means Precision Moulding Co., Inc., its directors, officers, employees, agents and representatives, predecessors, successors and assigns; its subsidiaries, divisions, and groups, and affiliates controlled by Precision Moulding Co., Inc., and the respective directors, officers, employees, agents and representatives, successors, and assigns of each.
B. "Stretcher bar products" means an art supply wood product which when assembled comprises a rectangular frame over which a canvas used for painting is stretched, and includes any size of stretcher bar.
IT IS ORDERED that respondent, directly or indirectly, through any corporation, subsidiary, division or other device, in connection with the manufacture, advertising, offering for sale, sale or distribution of any stretcher bar products, in or affecting commerce, as "commerce" is defined in the Federal Trade Commission Act, forthwith cease and desist from:
A. Requesting, suggesting, urging, or advocating that any competitor raise, fix or stabilize prices or price levels, or engage in any other pricing action; and
B. Entering into, attempting to enter into, adhering to, or maintaining any combination, conspiracy, agreement, understanding, plan or program with any competitor to fix, raise, establish, maintain or stabilize prices or price levels.
PROVIDED, that nothing in this order shall prohibit respondent from: (1) agreeing to sell or distribute its stretcher bar products to its competitors, and (2) negotiating or agreeing upon the price which any of its stretcher bar products will be sold to its competitors.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that respondent shall:
A. Within thirty (30) days of the date on which this order becomes final, provide a copy of this order to all of its directors, officers, and management employees;
B. For a period of three (3) years after the date on which this order becomes final, and within ten (10) days after the date on which any person becomes a director, officer, or management employee of respondent, provide a copy of this order to such person; and
C. Require each person to whom a copy of this order is furnished pursuant to subparagraphs III.A. and B. of this order to sign and submit to Precision Moulding Co., Inc. within thirty (30) days of the receipt thereof a statement that: (1) acknowledges receipt of the order; (2) represents that the undersigned has read and understands the order; and (3) acknowledges that the undersigned has been advised and understands that non-compliance with the order may subject Precision Moulding Co., Inc. to penalties for violation of the order.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that respondent shall:
A. Within sixty (60) days from the date on which this order becomes final, and annually thereafter for three (3) years on the anniversary date of this order, and at such other times as the Commission may by written notice to the respondent require, file with the Commission a verified written report setting forth in detail the manner and form in which respondent has complied and is complying with this order;
B. For a period of three (3) years after the order becomes final, maintain and make available to the staff of the Federal Trade Commission for inspection and copying, upon reasonable notice, all records of communications with competitors of respondent relating to any aspect of pricing for stretcher bar products, and records pertaining to any action taken in connection with any activity covered by parts II, III and IV, of this order; and
C. Notify the Commission at least thirty (30) days prior to any change in respondent such as dissolution, assignment or sale resulting in the emergence of a successor corporation, the creation or dissolution of subsidiaries, or any other change in the corporation that may affect compliance obligations arising out of this order.
IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that this order shall terminate on September 3, 2016.
By the Commission.
Donald S. Clark
ISSUED: September 3, 1996