Ex-Brooks boss Bill Roberti in £1m M&S battle


Bill Roberti, former boss of menswear group Brooks Brothers, suing Marks & Spencer for £1m in unpaid pension payments

The former boss of menswear group Brooks Brothers is suing Marks & Spencer for £1million in unpaid pension payments.

Bill Roberti, an American businessman, has claimed M&S tried to wriggle out of an agreement that dates back more than 25 years.

New York-based Brooks Brothers was owned by M&S from 1988 to 2001, during which time Roberti was in charge of the business for five years. M&S later sold the fashion brand for £160million to Retail Brand Alliance.

But the clothing retailer, once one of the oldest in the United States, filed for bankruptcy three years ago and Roberti claims he has not received any pension payments since.

As a result, he has launched action against its former parent Marks & Spencer to reclaim his money.

Legal action: Brooks Brothers filed for bankruptcy three years ago and Bill Roberti claims he has not received any pension payments since

Legal action: Brooks Brothers filed for bankruptcy three years ago and Bill Roberti claims he has not received any pension payments since

The businessman says the department store chain should honour a contract from 1993 which said it will cover any payments ‘not made by Brooks Brothers Group’.

M&S has rejected Roberti’s claims in their entirety as it says the agreement is no longer valid.

The British icon fully exited the US in 2006 by selling King’s Supermarkets, a 26-strong New Jersey chain.

As for Roberti, he is now a senior advisor at consultancy firm Alvarez & Marsal.

He also formerly served in the US Army and held several positions at the Pentagon.

M&S declined to comment. Roberti’s legal team was contacted for comment.



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