NEW YORK (CNNfn) - Struggling retailer Montgomery Ward, now in the midst of bankruptcy proceedings, received a restraining order Tuesday against competitor Sears, Roebuck & Co. to prevent the hiring away of Montgomery Ward employees.
Montgomery Ward alleged in the United States Bankruptcy Court in Delaware that Sears implemented an "action plan" to recruit Montgomery Ward managers to Sears, thereby weakening the company, which filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection July 7.
Montgomery Ward said Sears distributed the plan by electronic mail to Sears field locations and claimed the message outlined a plan to "hasten the weakening state of Montgomery Ward" and "make it more difficult for them to do business."
Jan Drummond, spokeswoman for Sears, would not comment on the allegations, but said her company would comply fully with the restraining order.
"We do have guidelines that cover recruiting associates from competitors that are going through difficult times and we are restating those guidelines today throughout the organization," Drummond said.
Montgomery Ward is the largest privately-held retailer in the country which, upon the closing of its specialty concept stores including Lechmere and Electric Avenue & More, will have 356 stores in 39 states.
-- Randy Schultz