THE WHAT? Bed Bath & Beyond’s bankruptcy estate, now named DK Butterfly, has filed a lawsuit against Mediterranean Shipping Co. (MSC) with the Federal Maritime Commission, seeking $300 million. The suit alleges that MSC overcharged the retailer for cargo shipping during the pandemic.
THE DETAILS The lawsuit, spanning 36 pages, claims that MSC charged exorbitant freight rates and failed to meet contractual pricing obligations, causing significant financial harm to Bed Bath & Beyond. The company, which filed for bankruptcy in April and subsequently sold its brand to Overstock.com, argues that MSC’s actions led to lost profits from unimported cargo and additional surcharges. MSC has responded, stating their intention to legally dispute the claims, which they consider meritless.
THE WHY? This legal action reflects the broader context of heightened ocean freight rates during the pandemic, significantly impacting retailers. Bed Bath & Beyond, along with other American companies, faced steep costs for shipping goods, particularly across the Pacific and from Asia to Europe. This lawsuit is part of Bed Bath & Beyond’s broader legal strategy, having previously filed similar claims against other shipping companies in an environment where the FMC has shown varied responses to such cases.