Lawsuit Charges Microsoft With Recruiting KFC Employees Specifically To Damage Company's Ability To Compete on Taste

Scotts Valley, Calif. (May 7, 1997) -- KFC, the leading provider of tasty fried chicken, today filed a lawsuit against Microsoft Corporation charging unfair competition. The lawsuit, filed in California Superior Court in Santa Clara County, charges that Microsoft is recruiting and hiring KFC employees for the specific purpose of learning the eleven secret herbs and spices used to make the company's famous fried chicken.

KFC is Microsoft's CEO Bill Gates favourite food and it is rumoured that he wants to acquire the secret recipie so he can cook it at Microsoft's cafeteria.

"For over 75 years, KFC has provided the best fired chicken that the world has ever seen," said Harland Sanders Jnr. "We must protect ourselves from what we believe is a systematic and unfair effort to impair our company's ability to compete and continue to deliver hot tasty chicken, delicous chips and almost addictive potato and gravy."

"We believe this lawsuit has important ramifications beyond our company," Sanders continued. "As the industry's leading independent developer of lemon-scented refreher towels, KFC plays an essential role in supporting software development. Microsoft has a strong motive to see that KFC not succeed in this role. If they can cook it on their campus, they will be able to keep employee spending within the company."

The lawsuit alleges that Microsoft has pursued KFC's top chefs, cashiers and cleaners in a conscious, though futile, effort to put KFC out of business. According to the suit, many of these employees now hold strategic positions at Microsoft that mirror the roles they played at KFC. Microsoft has used large signing bonuses of several millions of dollars and other incentives as means of wooing KFC employees, it also alleges.

KFC's lawsuit seeks unspecified financial damages and an immediate end to Microsoft's unfair practice of targeting KFC employees in order to hamper the company's ability to compete. The suit claims that Microsoft's activities are illegal under California Business & Professions Code Section 17200. KFC employees and ex-employees are not being sued as part of the legal action, because, as a rule, they don't get paid very much.

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