supermarkets within 5 miles of the proposed shopping center. Plaintiff alleges that Romano and Ronetco refused to consent to the operation of the new Shop Rite, thereby causing Village to breach its lease agreement with plaintiff.
Plaintiff has instituted this action seeking damages and injunctive relief from defendants by virtue of an alleged violation of §§ 1 and 2 of the Sherman Act, 15 U.S.C. §§ 1, 2. Plaintiff also brings, by way of pendent jurisdiction, claims for breach of contract, interference with a prospective economic advantage, and interference with contractual relations.
Defendants contend on this motion that: (A) plaintiff lacks standing to press its claim for antitrust damages, (B) plaintiff cannot establish an "antitrust injury," and (C) plaintiff's allegation of threatened injury is insufficient to afford injunctive relief.
Rule 56(c) provides that a summary judgment shall be rendered if "there is no genuine issue as to any material fact" and if "the moving party is entitled to a judgment as a matter of law." The party who moves for summary judgment has the burden of demonstrating that there is no genuine issue of fact. Manetas v. International Petroleum Carriers, Inc., 541 F.2d 408, 413 (3d Cir. 1976). The existence of disputed issues should be ascertained by resolving all inferences, doubts and issues of credibility against the moving party. Ely v. Hall's Motor Trans. Co., 590 F.2d 62, 66 (3d Cir. 1978).
Section 4 of the Clayton Act, 15 U.S.C. § 15, provides that "Any person who shall be injured in his business or property by reason of anything forbidden in the antitrust laws may sue ...." A literal construction of this statute would afford relief to all persons whose injuries are causally related to an antitrust violation. However, § 4 has been interpreted in a more narrow fashion. As the United States Supreme Court noted in Hawaii v. Standard Oil Co., 405 U.S. 251, 92 S. Ct. 885, 31 L. Ed. 2d 184 (1972), "(t)he lower courts have been virtually unanimous in concluding that Congress did not intend the antitrust laws to provide a remedy in damages for all injuries that might conceivably be traced to an antitrust violation." 405 U.S. at 263 n.14, 92 S. Ct. at 891 n.14.
The test for standing under § 4 of the Clayton Act has been spelled out in this circuit by Cromar Co. v. Nuclear Materials & Equipment Corp., 543 F.2d 501 (3d Cir. 1976) and Bravman v. Bassett Furn. Industries, Inc., 552 F.2d 90 (3d Cir. 1977). In Cromar, the court analyzed earlier Third Circuit opinions on § 4 standing and concluded
(e)ach case ... must be carefully analyzed in terms of the particular factual matrix presented. In making this factual determination courts must look to, among other factors, the nature of the industry in which the alleged antitrust violation exists, the relationship of the plaintiff to the alleged violator, and the alleged effect of the antitrust violation upon the plaintiff. Then, while recognizing that breaches of the antitrust laws have effects throughout society, a court must decide whether this plaintiff is one "whose protection is the fundamental purpose of the antitrust laws."