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Forecourt Trader: Shell speaks out over Don

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Forecourt Trader: Shell speaks out over Don

April 1995

Shell has broken its vow of silence and issued a strongly-worded statement to defend itself against what it sees as “the growing number of untrue and often offensive allegations being made by Don Marketing”.

Shell is defending legal actions which allege that it wrongfully used two forecourt promotions devised by Don Marketing. Previously, the oil company has remained silent, preferring to “resolve the dispute in the courts which Shell believes is the proper forum for a commercial dispute”.

The statement claims that “the allegation is untrue. Don Marketing has no case and the legal actions are being strenuously defended”.  Mr Donovan has written to the directors of Shell UK and its parent companies, and plans to write to the company’s shareholders, the President of the Board of Trade and users of the Internet.

Don Marketing also alleges that it plans to produce a book, and has sent a questionnaire to Shell sites in the UK attempting to assemble negative views of Shell. Shell believes these actions are an attempt to sully its reputation with sensationalist allegations in the hope the company will be forced into settling false claims.”

Don Marketing has faxed Shell md David Varney giving him “seven days to retract certain defamatory claims within the statement after which,” said John Donovan, “we will issue libel proceedings”.  Shell’s response is steadfast: “What we said is true and accurate.”

Meanwhile Mr Donovan claims that 75 per cent of those who responded to the questionnaire thought Shell ‘unethical incompetent, greedy bathbuns’ against four per cent who chose to describe the company as ‘ethical, reasonable and efficient’.


Link to Original Article

Update July 2008.

Shell settled all of the claims referred to above described as being “false claims”. Don Marketing also received a substantial financial package in respect of the libel proceedings which were issued after the ultimatum expired. Shell also paid all legal costs. 

This website and sisters,,,, and, are owned by John Donovan. There is also a Wikipedia segment.

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