DETROIT (CelebrityAccess MediaWire) — Palace Sports & Entertainment has filed suit against Olympia Entertainment, alleging violations of Michigan's Trade Secrets Act, breach of contract, unfair competition and conspiracy between Olympia and former employees of PS&E.
Through the lawsuit PS&E is asking for an injunction against Olympia Entertainment and a number of former PS&E employees that jumped ship to join Olympia or their parent company Ilitch Holdings. Additionally, they are seeking the return of confidential records and monetary damages.
According to Crain's Detroit Business journal, the lawsuit was sparked by the departure of PS&E President Tom Wilson, who abruptly left the company in February to join a new venture by Ilitch holdings, potentially to build a new arena for the Ilitch-owned NHL team, the Detroit Red Wings. While Wilson was not named in the suit, he recruited nine of his former staffers at PS&E, including executive vice president of marketing Craig Turnbull and executive vice president of sales John Ciszewski to follow him to the new Ilitch venture.
Both Turnbull and Ciszewski are named in the suit as are marketing director Craig Peiser, marketing director Greg Bozek, director of group sales Sara Daniel and four other employees.
The suit also alleges that some of the named employees took confidential information from PS&E when they left, including vendor lists, pricing lists, business plans, payments forms, logs, contact lists and financial records. Additionally, one of the named individuals has been accused of attempting to illicitly gain access to PS&E computer systems to obtain additional confidential information since leaving the company.
"In nearly 30 years of conducting business in this community and across the country, we have prided ourselves on adhering to the highest ethical standards as individuals and as a company – and we will continue to do so. While we are still reviewing the lengthy lawsuit filed today by Palace Sports & Entertainment, it seems to be a classic case of sour grapes over the voluntary departure of key Palace employees who chose to pursue what they perceived as better career opportunities. As this is now an active legal matter, we will reserve any further comment for the court room." an Olympia spokesman told Crain's. – CelebrityAccess Staff Writers