Bama Budweiser of Montgomery, Inc. v. Anheuser-Busch, Inc

In Bama Budweiser of Montgomery, Inc. v. Anheuser-Busch, Inc., 611 So. 2d 238, 247 (Ala. 1992) the owner of Bama Budweiser, Schilleci, sued Anheuser-Busch, alleging the tort of intentional interference with business relations. Anheuser-Busch had assigned different areas of primary responsibility to its wholesalers. Schilleci approached one of Anheuser-Busch's wholesalers, Daniel, about purchasing two of the wholesale beer distributorships in Alabama. The two came to an agreement regarding the sale, an agreement contingent upon Anheuser-Busch's approval of Schilleci as a wholesaler. Eventually, Schilleci was approved as a transferee of the wholesale beer distributorships. The parties signed an agreement, and Schilleci was given his territory. Soon after Schilleci began distributing in his assigned territory, he discovered that he was not the sole distributor in the area and that an informal agreement had been made between Daniel and Horn, another wholesale beer distributor, by which Horn would be allowed to distribute in that particular territory. Schilleci sent a letter to Anheuser-Busch, asking that it resolve the problem. Anheuser-Busch, however, recommended that Horn be allowed to continue distributing in that area. Schilleci argued that Anheuser-Busch had interfered with the contract between Schilleci and Daniel by allowing the holder of another of Anheuser-Busch's accounts to work in Schilleci's territory. The Court held that Anheuser-Busch was a party to the contract between Daniel and Schilleci because, without Anheuser-Busch's approval, neither Schilleci nor Daniel could market or sell Anheuser-Busch products. By accepting the assignment of Daniel's contract with Anheuser-Busch, Schilleci bound himself to the terms of that agreement.