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The Villages alleges rogue salespeople stole customer information

The Villages is alleging salespeople who went rogue still have sensitive spreadsheets containing customer information important to the highly successful sales arm of Florida’s Friendliest Hometown.

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Properties of The Villages contracts structured to protect trade secrets

Properties of The Villages contracts with its salespeople are clearly structured to protect trade secrets, which have been built from the ground up here in Florida’s Friendliest Hometown.

A 10-page Independent Contractor Agreement signed by former Villages salespeople Jason and Angela Kranz and Christopher Day are at the heart of a legal battle in federal court between the trio of rogue salespeople and The Villages.

The three successful Properties of The Villages salespeople set off a bombshell on Dec. 16 when they each announced – by email to their colleagues – their abrupt departure from Properties of The Villages. They also announced on social media their intent to form their own real estate venture, KD Premier Realty LLC.

The Villages has come a long way since the days of founder Harold Schwartz.

The Villages has grown and flourished since the early days of Harold Schwartz’s mobile home park in what is now known as the Historic Side of The Villages. His son, H. Gary Morse, is largely credited with providing the magic which transformed Harold’s dream into the No. 1 Master Planned Community in The United States.

Those hard-earned trade secrets are clearly something worth protecting, according to the contract inked with each of its salespeople. It declares that “Properties of The Villages and The Villages have invested substantial resources, time, energy and money in developing and protecting the Confidential Information and Proprietary Information” and that “this information is not easily obtainable through common sources.” The contract also acknowledges that Properties of The Villages has “substantial relationships with existing customers and specific prospective customers.” The salespeople agree not to divulge those precious trade secrets. 

Jason Kranz and Christopher Day were reportedly so successful at selling “dream homes” in The Villages that they have had streets named for them. Their lucrative sales careers also got them the occasional trip aboard the Morse jet.

Day Drive in The Villages.

Christopher Day

Yet from the start, they signed off on working as independent contractors and not as employees of The Villages. The contract specifies that, “Salesperson is not an employee as that term is used and defined in federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act or the National Labor Relations Act.”

Another key provision in the Properties of The Villages contract with its salespeople is the 24-month non-compete clause.

Angela and Jason Kranz

It states that “for a period of 24 months following the termination of the Agreement, Salesperson shall not directly or indirectly engage in and shall have no interest in any business or entity, whether as an owner, shareholder, member, employee, agent, consultant, contractor, or other affiliates of any kind, that is in any way involved with the sale, marketing, leasing, management, or the closing of sales transactions, or real estate situation within the geographic area known as The Villages.”

Finally, the contract points out that it is signed “freely and voluntarily” and that the salesperson was given the opportunity to have the contract reviewed “by counsel of his or her choosing prior to its execution.”

You can see the complete contract at this link: POV sales contract

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