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Gillette sues former employees for allegedly sharing secrets

Gillette filed a lawsuit on Friday against four former employees alleging that they shared confidential information about its razors with a competitor.

The shaving giant, which is based in Boston and owned by Procter & Gamble, filed the suit in Suffolk Superior Court. The lawsuit said the employees disclosed trade secrets to ShaveLogic Inc., a Dallas company that specializes in wet shaving, about future products they developed while working at Gillette. The company also alleges that ShaveLogic then took that information and sought patents on the products.

All four of the employees are now employed by ShaveLogic, which also is named as a defendant.

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“We invest heavily in innovation so that we can introduce some of the best products on the market,” said Kara Buckley, a spokeswoman for P&G. “It’s why we would take this action today.”

The lawsuit said Craig Provost, John Griffin, William Tucker, and Douglas Kohring, signed agreements that prohibited them from sharing trade secrets or confidential information with another entity. Gillette said the defendants also received severance packages and stock options that precluded them from sharing information.

In the suit the company said ShaveLogic was issued a patent for a magnetic attachment for a blade cartridge that the employees worked on while employed at Gillette, as well as additional patents related to their research in Boston.

It also said ShaveLogic has made a habit of hiring and recruiting Gillette employees to obtain trade secrets.

The company is seeking an injunction to stop the former employees from using Gillette’s information. It said monetary damages would be determined at trial.

Representatives for ShaveLogic could not immediately be reached for comment.


Taryn Luna can be reached at taryn.luna@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @TarynLuna.