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In DLA Piper's latest case report, the High Court awarded damages of £30,000 and gave an injunction to a company after a former employee breached restrictive covenants by using a combination of customer contact details and information from purchase logs acquired during his employment to poach customers.
Mr Penfold was employed by Decorus as a sales account manager in 2012. He signed a contract of employment, including restrictive covenants that were unlikely to be enforceable due to them being too widely drafted.
Decorus later introduced new employment contracts, following a review of all of its employment materials.
Mr Penfold signed a new contract containing narrower restrictive covenants in 2013. He had been given a pay rise a month before this, following an appraisal.
He argued that, seeing as he had received the pay rise before the 2013 contract was signed and before he had even seen the terms of the new contract, this could not be counted as consideration for entry into the new restrictive covenants.
However, Decorus said that the introduction of the 2013 contract was part of a three-phase process: the appraisal; possible actions after the appraisal; and the issuing of a new updated contract.
Mr Penfold handed in his notice in January 2016 and left in February to set up his own company, which had been incorporated in September 2015.
He appeared to have used his access to Decorus’s purchase logs, which contained highly confidential and c