Giant cosmetic chain deactivates Asian’s accounts
French brand and chain cosmetic store Sephora, is accused of racially discriminating against customers of Asian and Chinese origin. The cosmetic company allegedly blocked the users after an online marketing event that took place on November 6th.
The allegations started after the event, which offered a 20 percent discount on products, the event captivated so many consumers the website crashed. Once the website was back up and running later that day, email addresses with names indicating Asian/Chinese national origin, descent and race were blocked or deactivated.
The plaintiffs claim the company acted on the “discriminatory belief that all Chinese/Asian customers abuse discount sales to engage in bulk purchase for re-sale.”
Owned by LVMH, the cosmetic giant denied the accusations, and stated: “This lawsuit significantly distorts the facts in this matter. We look forward to defending our actions in court,” the statement said. “Among other points, we intend to make very clear that clients from a number of countries around the world have been impacted by a temporary block we needed to place on accounts in order to restore the functionality of our site during a surge of activity by resellers during a promotional event two weeks ago.”
“This is an egregious example of a retailer singling out individuals based on racial sterotypes,” Attorney Doug Wigdor said.
Wigdor estimated he’d seek a sum deep in the millions, he is waiting for figures to be determined at trial.