Hertz fires back stating Accenture's motion to dismiss 'has no merit'

Hertz has fired back at Accenture in court for making claims that premature and without merit, after the latter filed a motion to dismiss its Florida Deceptive and Unfair trade Practices Act (FDUTPA) claim and asserted counterclaims for payment of “past-due invoices” earlier this month.

In a court filing seen by Marketing, Hertz pointed out Accenture’s failure to provide a tablet breakpoint and its refusal to provide a dynamic Visual Style Guide as breaches of contact. In addition, it is pursuing a FDUTPA claim, which Accenture had previously said was unsubstantiated.

"Accenture also acted unfairly, deceptively, and extortionately when it refused to provide the contractually required services and deliverables unless Hertz paid Accenture money in excess of what the parties had agreed," argued Hertz in the filing.

Hertz also refuted Accenture's appeal to the court to dismiss claims outside of the parties’ contractual obligations including "consequential, incidental, indirect or punitive damages”, stating that it has not specified the categories of damages it is seeking because it does not yet know them.

However, Hertz asserted its intention to seek recovery of fees paid to Accenture for work that did not meet Accenture’s warranty and had no value. This, according to the company, are direct damages and are within the parties’ agreement expressly allows Hertz to recover them. It also highlighted that exculpatory clauses that limit damages are not necessarily enforceable if Accenture engaged in conduct that “smacks of intentional wrongdoing”.

Hertz added that Accenture's concerns changes made in the contract cannot be "properly resolved on a motion to dismiss". Also, the change excluded Accenture’s warranties and therefore, Hertz's claim breach of warranties should remain unaffected.

The lawsuit first saw media coverage in April when Hertz Corporation sued Accenture for breach of contract by failing to deliver a functional website or mobile app. According to the lawsuit filed by Hertz to the US district court of the southern district of New York seen by Marketing, the lawsuit stated that Accenture began work on the execution phase of the project in August 2016 until its services were terminated in May 2018. The document said that during that period of time, Hertz paid Accenture more than US$32 million in fees and expenses but the latter did not deliver as it “failed” to properly manage and perform the service.

It detailed that the go-live date for both the website and mobile app was postponed twice – January and April 2018. The lawsuit stated that by then, Hertz “no longer had any confidence” that Accenture was capable of completing the project. It added that Accenture’s work was “seriously deficient” in multiple areas.