Archive: March 2014

Kahn et. al. v. M&F Worldwide Corp. et. al., No. 334, 2013

By Kristy Harlan and Porter Sesnon

In a much anticipated decision, on March 14, 2014 the Delaware Supreme Court sitting en banc unanimously affirmed then-Chancellor Strine’s decision in In re MFW Shareholders Litigation to dismiss a stockholder lawsuit related to the 2011 acquisition of M&F Worldwide Corp. (“MFW”) by its controlling stockholder, MacAndrews & Forbes Holdings, Inc. (“Holdings”). In upholding the dismissal, the Delaware Supreme Court confirmed that the business judgment standard of review, rather than an “entire fairness” standard of review, applies to controlling-party buyouts where the transaction is conditioned ab initio upon both: (1) the approval of an independent, adequately-empowered special committee that meets its duty of care and (2) the un-coerced, informed vote of a majority of the minority stockholders.

In May 2011, Holdings, which owned 43.4% of MFW’s common stock, began to explore the possibility of taking MFW private. In June 2011, Holdings delivered a written proposal to purchase the MFW shares not already owned by Holdings for $24 per share in cash, representing a premium to the prior day’s closing price of $16.96. Holdings’ proposal expressly stated that it would be subject to approval by a special committee of MFW’s board made up of independent directors, and included a non-waivable condition that a majority of the minority of stockholders approve the transaction.

Read More

Frank v. Elgamal, C.A. No. 6120-VCN (March 10, 2014) (Noble, V.C.)

By Annette Becker and Claire White

In this opinion, Vice Chancellor Noble considered defendants’ motion for summary judgment in connection with various breach of fiduciary duty claims asserted by a former stockholder, Richard Frank, against the Board of Directors and two employees of American Surgical Holdings, Inc. (“ASH”), a public company, in connection with the merger of ASH with an affiliate of Great Point Partners I, L.P. (“GPP”).  In connection with the motion the Chancery Court examined:

• the “entire fairness” standard of review;

• the effect of a special committee on the standard of review;

• the standard of review for Revlon claims upon a motion for summary judgment, particularly where the target’s charter includes an exculpatory clause;

• a special committee’s examination of projections underlying a fairness opinion, including where multiple sets of projections are prepared; and

• the interaction between a shareholder’s unjust enrichment and breach of fiduciary duty claims upon a motion for summary judgment.

Read More

Copyright © 2019, K&L Gates LLP. All Rights Reserved.