CMS Dolphin Ltd v Simonet

CMS Dolphin Ltd v Simonet [2001] EWHC Ch 415 is a UK company law case concerning directors' duties.

CMS Dolphin Ltd v Simonet
Charing Cross Road - - 367923.jpg
Charing Cross Rd, home of CMS Dolphin Ltd
CourtHigh Court
Decided23 May 2001
Citation(s)[2001] EWHC (Ch) 4159, [2001] 2 BCLC 704
Case opinions
Lawrence Collins J
Duty of loyalty, resigning


Mr Simonet resigned from his position as managing director of CMS Dolphin Ltd (a small advertising company on Charing Cross Road) and he set up a new company. CMS’s staff followed and so did the major clients. CMS sued Mr Simonet for the profits he made, alleging that he had breached his duty of loyalty to the company. Mr Simonet contended that he owed no duty because he had left the company.


Lawrence Collins J held that Mr Simonet resigned without giving proper notice, and so he was in breach of contract. He had made no proper disclosure and had misused confidential information. The maturing business opportunities were the company’s property, ‘where he knowingly had a conflict of interest, and exploited it by resigning from the company’. Resignation was not a fiduciary power in itself, and no obligations continued after the end of the relationship.

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