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B/E Aerospace Sued Over $250 Million Distribution Deal

Oct. 17 (Bloomberg) -- B/E Aerospace Inc., a maker of cabin interiors for commercial and business aircraft, was sued for allegedly breaking a contract for distribution of oxygen-systems products.

Leki Aviation, a closely held distributor of aircraft parts, interiors and components, filed the suit today in New York State Supreme Court in Manhattan, accusing Wellington, Florida-based B/E Aerospace of wrongful termination of a five-year agreement to distribute B/E oxygen-systems products. The value of the agreement would exceed $250 million in direct sales of B/E products alone, Leki said in the complaint.

Leki, based in Kastrup, Denmark, accused B/E of making false and misleading statements to get Leki to accept a lower discount rate on B/E products so B/E could use the agreement as leverage in pricing sales to Airbus SAS and its Satair unit, according to the complaint.

The suit, which seeks unspecified compensatory, consequential and punitive damages, also accuses Toulouse, France-based Airbus and its Satair unit of interfering with the contract by forcing B/E to terminate the pact.

“B/E further made these material false and untrue representations to Leki, with the intent to deceive Leki, and with the intent to cause Leki, a Satair competitor, to change its competitive position in the marketplace and thereby provide B/E products an additional unfair market advantage,” Leki said in its complaint.

Greg Powell, a spokesman for B/E Aerospace, didn’t immediately respond to e-mail and voice messages seeking comment on the lawsuit.

Airbus doesn’t comment on lawsuits, Mary Anne Greczyn, a Virginia-based spokeswoman for the company, said in an e-mail.

The case is Leki Aviation A/S v. B/E Aerospace, 653625/2012, New York State Supreme Court, New York County (Manhattan).

To contact the reporter on this story: Chris Dolmetsch in New York at cdolmetsch@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Hytha at mhytha@bloomberg.net

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