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Tops Markets, Inc. v. Quality Markets, Inc.,

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
142 F.3d 90 (2d Cir. 1998)


Tops Markets, Inc. (Tops) (plaintiff), was a New York corporation in the retail-supermarket business. In 1991, Tops decided to establish a retail supermarket in Jamestown, New York. Tops found a suitable site and entered an agreement with James V. Paige Jr. (defendant) to buy four parcels on the site. Under the terms of the agreement, Paige would sell the four parcels to Tops and obtain options to purchase the remaining parcels. Quality Markets, Inc. (Quality) (defendant) was a subsidiary of Penn Traffic Company (defendant) and competed against Tops in the retail-supermarket business. After learning of Tops’s attempts to establish a supermarket in Jamestown, Quality reached an agreement with Paige to purchase two non-contiguous parcels of land at Tops’s intended site. The agreement was conditioned on the termination of Paige’s previous contract with Tops. Paige canceled the contract with Tops and sold the parcels to Quality at an above-market price. Tops brought a lawsuit, alleging in part that Quality and Paige had violated § 2 of the Sherman Act by monopolizing or attempting to monopolize the industry. The district court dismissed the claims on summary judgment, and Tops appealed the dismissal.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Cardamone, J.)

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