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Intermar, Inc. v. Atlantic Richfield Co.

United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania

August 9, 1973

Civil Action No. CA 73-1397

Opinion

 [*85]  Findings of Fact, Conclusions of Law and Discussion

TROUTMAN, D. J.

Introduction

On Friday, June 22, 1973, the plaintiff, the owner and operator of a retail gasoline station in the City of Philadelphia, filed with this Court its complaint and ex parte motion for a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction, seeking to compel the defendant, a manufacturer and distributor of petroleum products, to forthwith deliver to plaintiff needed supplies of gasoline motor fuel to assure plaintiff's continued operation of its retail gasoline distributorship located at 80th and Ogontz Avenue in the City of Philadelphia. The defendant, upon contact by the Court, agreed to supply the plaintiff's gasoline needs at said station through Tuesday, June 26, 1973, thus eliminating the need for a temporary restraining order. Hearing was fixed for Wednesday, June 27, 1973, the earliest date reasonably convenient to the parties and the Court. Commencing June 27, 1973, the matter was heard through July 9, 1973.

In its complaint, the plaintiff alleged that the defendant, on or about May 25, 1973:

1. Combined or conspired with one or more [**2]  of its lessee dealers (in the counties of Philadelphia, Bucks, Chester, Delaware and Montgomery -- the "Philadelphia Metropolitan Area") -- to suppress ARCO's large volume price discounting independent dealers in the area, including plaintiff, as effective competitors of its lessee dealers, in violation of Section 1 of the Sherman Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1 et seq. (First Count of the Complaint);

 [*86]  2. Combined or conspired with one or more of its lessee dealers in the Philadelphia metropolitan area to raise, regulate or stabilize the prices charged the public for gasoline by its lessee dealers and its large volume price discounting independent dealers, including plaintiff, in the area, in violation of Section 1 of the Sherman Act, supra (First Count of the Complaint);

3. Committed a material breach of the "Contract Dealer Agreement" between plaintiff and defendant entered into on June 30, 1972, by failing to adhere to then general practice or to sustain a course of performance upon which plaintiff had come to rely to continue its discount gasoline business. (Fourth Count of the Complaint);

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364 F. Supp. 82 *; 1973 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 12349 **; 1973-2 Trade Cas. (CCH) P74,773

Intermar, Inc., t/a Super Sonic Car Wash v. Atlantic Richfield Co.

CORE TERMS

gasoline, dealers, supplies, lessee-dealers, retail, sales, Oil, station, interstate commerce, gas station, conspiracy, discounting, parties, marketing, curtailment, preliminary injunction, Sherman Act, allocations, allegations, irreparable harm, control program, marketing area, constitutes, anti-trust, customers, gallonage, intervening event, written agreement, current practice, effective