- Electronics makers Samsung and LG are accused of partaking in an anti-poaching agreement, according to Reuters, and opted not to hire one another's workers. This "eliminated competition" between the two South Korean companies and would have held down their wages, Bloomberg reports.
- LG denied any such agreement existed, and Samsung did not comment. However, the former LG manager who brought the suit claims that the agreement was long-standing, and Bloomberg reports it dates back to "at least 2005."
- This allegation is "familiar" in Silicon Valley, Reuters reports, as Apple and Google had been accused of such an agreement only a year prior. They settled $415 million over similar claims in that case.
Anti-poaching agreements may be particularly tempting for employers in hard-to-recruit industries, tech being a strong example of this. Since LG and Samsung supposedly had similar work cultures, wages and benefits were the only competitive issue between the two, which worked in favor of employees, as they would have their pick of well-paying opportunities. An anti-poaching agreement would have turned that on its head.
How common these illegal agreements are is unknown, though Apple, Google, Intel and Adobe have all settled on the issue in the past.