- WH Smith is considering taking Associated Newspapers to court over the publisher's decision to scrap its £100 million distribution contract. The possibility is hinted at in a memo from distribution head Lloyd Wigglesworth that was obtained by The Times newspaper. In his note to senior managers, Wigglesworth observes that Associated's right to terminate, "would probably have to be decided in a court of law."
Wigglesworth considered that Associated's decision could ultimately be referred to the competition commission and accused newspaper publishers of colluding to push WH Smith out of the distribution business. The retailer is currently at loggerheads with publishers over its plans for a national distribution system.
Associated argue that it had given the required six months notice to quit the deal and was therefore in full compliance with its contract.