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P&G, UNILEVER SETTLE SPY CASE

Published on .

(Sept. 6, 2001) -- Procter & Gamble Co. and Unilever have settled issues related to P&G's spying activities against Unilever.

Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

P&G Chairman John E. Pepper said in a statement that the agreement protects each marketer's business interests.

"I have been personally involved in ensuring that none of the information has been or will be used in any P&G plans," Mr. Pepper said. "This agreement will have no impact on the effectiveness of our product or marketing plans and will not inhibit fair and vigorous competition in the marketplace."

In a separate statement, Unilver of United States President-CEO Charles B. Strauss said the settlement ends an "unfortunate incident."

"We have a settlement that ensures that our confidential information is protected," Mr. Strauss said. "With this agreement, we are confident that Procter & Gamble Co.'s conduct will not impede the continued growth of our brands here."

Late last week, a source close to the talks said the settlement was likely to include restrictions on P&G hair care marketing activities through 2003, appointment of an independent monitor to oversee P&G's hair care marketing, transfer of key hair care executives to other duties and a cash payment in excess of $10 million.

Settlement talks began four months ago when Mr. Pepper informed Unilever of intelligence gathering that violated P&G's ethics rules but which P&G said did not break the law. The P&G intelligence operation included Dumpster diving outside Unilever's Chicago personal care marketing officers, the company said. -- Jack Neff

Copyright September 2001, Crain Communications Inc.

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