Walgreens to settle class-action suit over ad restrictions

Walgreens agreed Sept. 17 to settle a class-action lawsuit alleging it violated antitrust laws by restricting search advertisements, according to Digital News Daily.

The lawsuit claimed Walgreens, along with Vision Direct — now owned by Walgreens — entered into illegal agreements with 1-800 Contacts to restrict search advertising. The retail pharmacy giant allegedly entered these arrangements because 1-800 Contacts threatened Walgreens about advertising for its rivals, arguing its trademark was infringed upon when rivals used its brand name to trigger search ads.

The Federal Trade Commission ruled last year that the agreement was illegal and may have deprived consumers the ability to compare brands, according to Digital News Daily.

The financial details of the settlement were not disclosed yet.

Read the full report here.

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