Just hours after Google announced their entry into mobile payments the company has been slapped with a lawsuit from none other than PayPal, alleging that the search giant misappropriated trade secrets when it hired away PayPal mobile executives. The suit specifically mentions Osama Bedier and Stephanie Tilenius, both former PayPal employees who were on stage to unveil Google's new Google Wallet program yesterday.
Apparently the whole ordeal begun in 2008 when PayPal's parent company, eBay, started to negotiate with Google to make PayPal a payment option for mobile application purchases on the Android Market. The negotiations went on for a while, with Bedier taking over in early 2010 just around the time Google hires Tilenius as vice president of e-commerce.
Once at Google, Tilenius begins to lure Bedier away from PayPal to work for her, despite contractual agreements to abstain from that. Apparently, after accepting then rebutting the job offer, a multi million deal does the trick. Making matters worse the complaint alleges that Bedier had begun the interview process with Google as he continued to negotiate with them on PayPal's behalf to make PayPal a mobile payments option on the Android Market.
In January 2011, Bedier supposedly transferred PayPal's mobile payment strategy to his personal, non-PayPal computer, and shortly afterwards made the move to Google official. This decision sent shock waves inside PayPal, according to reports, not to mention Google reneged its finalized agreement with PayPal saying it was building a competing product.
CNN has a detailed timeline of the events and it seems PayPal would have reason to be angry. The company believes that Bedier and Tilenius’ inside knowledge of technology, strategies and partnerships presents a real threat to their business. Google has not yet responded to the lawsuit but from the looks of it they could be in for a nasty fight.
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