PETALING JAYA: Tealive outlets are still very much alive amid a legal tussle between its operator Loob Holding Sdn Bhd and rival Chatime Taiwanese owner La Kaffa International Co Ltd.
A check by The Star at an outlet operating out of a shopping mall here found that it was business as usual, with dozens of patrons lining up for bubble tea.
Tealive staff had their hands full tending to customers, many of whom were there to redeem rewards card or to snap up special promotions for fear that the outlets would not be operating due to an interim injunction issued by the court.
A sales executive who only wanted to be known as Yee Leng, 30, was there to use her Tealive rewards card.
“I’m aware of the court case so I want to use the value in the card. I like the bubble milk tea,” she said.
On the Tealive Asia Facebook page, the franchise stated that all stores would remain open pending further direction from the courts.
Loob has been operating 161 Tealive outlets in Malaysia and their closure will reportedly affect 800 staff.
Loob has filed an appeal to the Federal Court to reverse the ruling granted in favour of La Kaffa.
This follows the Court of Appeal’s rejection of Loob’s application for a stay to keep its Tealive outlets open while it appeals a court ruling that prohibits it from operating a competing business to Chatime in Malaysia for two years.
Loob’s application, filed a day after the Court of Appeal’s ruling of the interim injunction granted in favour of Chatime’s La Kaffa International on June 27, was rejected on the grounds that the company breached various contractual and legal obligations to La Kaffa related to its restraint of trade obligations and Malaysia’s franchise law.
In January 2017, the agreement between La Kaffa and Loob, which was to last until 2041, was terminated because of the Taiwanese firm’s disagreement on the business direction of Chatime in Malaysia.
Loob chief executive officer, Bryan Loo, subsequently created Tealive, which also has other brands under its roof.
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