A lawsuit - filed Friday in the Circuit Court of Cook County, Ill. - states that Orbitz inappropriately demanded a $1.5 million payment not required by their joint online listing agreement, which runs through Dec. 31. The lawsuit also states that when the owners of Alamo and National refused to make the additional payment, Orbitz retaliated and deliberately violated its contract by removing both Alamo and National from its main Rental Car Matrix.
Alamo and National became charter members of the Orbitz matrix when Orbitz was launched in 2001. Since then, Orbitz has advertised and marketed its online matrix as "unbiased," enabling customers to make side-by-side comparisons between car rental companies.
The lawsuit accuses Orbitz of breach of contract, intentional interference with prospective business relationships, consumer deception, deceptive trade practices and unfair competition - all of which is costing Alamo and National millions of dollars in lost revenue as well as lost customers and customer goodwill.
--Nina M. Lentini