Case 5: A long term relation

This case shows how Mediation can successfully be used by SME (small and medium enterprises) and large companies and help both parties to stay in business together.

Dispute between an SME and a large company

The SME had been a supplier for a big supermarket since 1995. In 2010, the big supermarket decided to reduce the number of orders in a significant way. This client represented 90% of the SME’s turnover, and the fall of the orders put the SME in a very difficult situation. After few contacts between the commercial partners, the SME decided to stop the supply for the big company. Instead of going to court, the SME decided to try Mediation as it could not afford the loss of such an important client.

After ten hours of Mediation, the parties reached an agreement with a reduction of the price (of the SME’s supply services) and a global re-negotiation of the contract.

Two SMEs decided to create a common third company to practice a specific commercial activity (creation and sale of blind rollers). After a few months, problems appeared concerning the management of the common structure. The conflict paralyzed the activity of the third company. The parties reached an agreement in Mediation, establishing the management practical details.

Project Partners

  • Eurochambres, Brussels, Belgium (Project coordinator)
  • Brussels Enterprises, Commerce and Industry Belgium
  • Croatian Chamber of Economy
  • Cyprus Chamber of Commerce and Economy
  • Centre for Mediation and Arbitration of Paris, France
  • Handelskammer Hamburg Service GmbH, Germany
  • The Union of Italian Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Handicraft and Agriculture
  • Open University of Italian Chambers of Commerce
  • Latvian Chamber of Commerce and Industry
  • Iasi Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Romania
  • Barcelona Chamber of Commerce, Industry and Navigation, Spain