Lorillard Tobacco Company (formerly P. Lorillard Co.) has petitioned the Federal Trade Commission to reopen and set aside a 1958 order requiring Lorillard to offer compensation for promo- tional services on proportionally equal terms to all competing companies that distribute its tobacco and other products. Lorillard seeks the action pursuant to the Commission's "sun- setting" policy for competition orders, under which the FTC presumes the public interest requires terminating orders more than 20 years old.
The petition will be subject to public comment for 30 days, until June 14.
Lorillard Tobacco Company is based in New York City. P. Lorillard Co. was merged into Lorillard Corporation in 1969. It then was merged into Loews Theatres, Inc., which in 1985 changed its name to Lorillard, Inc. Lorillard Tobacco Company purchased Lorillard, Inc. in 1989.
The 1958 Commission order, affirmed by the Third Circuit Court of Appeals in 1959, stemmed from FTC charges that P. Lorillard Co. favored chain-store customers over other customers by offering promotional allowances on discriminatory terms. Specifically, the FTC alleged that the respondent, in adopting and using sales-promotion plans offered by ABC and CBS, procured in-store promotion for its products from the favored customers by providing them with the benefits of broadcasting time, without making the same benefits to other customers on proportionally equal terms.
Comments on the petition should be addressed to the FTC, Office of the Secretary, 6th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20580.
Copies of the petition and the 1958 order are available from the FTC's Public Reference Branch, Room 130, same address as above.
(FTC Docket No. 6600)