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Delaware Court of Chancery Determines Fair Value in PetSmart and SWS Group Appraisal Cases

In recent years, the Delaware Court of Chancery has issued a number of high-profile opinions in appraisal litigations, many of which addressed the central question of whether and to what extent the underlying transaction price is the best proxy for “fair value” in an appraisal proceeding. In the recent Dell and DFC decisions, the Court of Chancery declined to adopt the transaction price as the best measure of fair value, creating concern that appraisal petitioners would be able to regularly obtain awards at a premium to the deal price, even where the underlying transaction was the product of a sales process that otherwise satisfied the board’s obligations under Delaware law.

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The Ropes Recap: Mergers & Acquisitions Law News

Practices: Mergers & Acquisitions

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Linked is the Second Half 2016 edition of the Ropes & Gray M&A Newsletter. Topics addressed in this edition include:

News from the Courts

  • Delaware Court of Chancery Once Again Rejects Transaction Price as the Best Measure of Fair Value in DFC Global Litigation
  • In an Appraisal Proceeding, Chancery Court More Likely to Equate Deal Price with Fair Value Where Transaction Is the Result of an Appropriate Sales Process
  • Some Non-Delaware Courts Reject “Disclosure-Only” Settlements and Endorse Trulia Standard, but a New York Court Adopts a Different Approach
  • Narayanan v. Sutherland Global Holdings: The Importance of Unifying D&O Indemnification and Expense Advancement Standards Across Corporate Documentation
  • Three Court of Chancery Decisions Consider the Effect of Stockholder Approval on Challenged Transactions
  • Chancery Court Dismisses Suit by Former Shareholders Against Board Members of OM Group, Inc., Applying the Corwin Standard and Making the Sale at Issue Subject to the Business Judgment Rule
  • Delaware Court of Chancery Applies Entire Fairness Standard to Find Interested Directors May Not Extinguish Breach of Fiduciary Duty Claims through Merger
  • Chancery Court Confirms Continued Applicability of “MFW” Standard in Dismissing Challenge to Controller Buyout
  • Additional Delaware Guidance on Avoiding Extra-Contractual Fraud Claims in a Sale Transaction
  • Delaware Supreme Court Revives Fiduciary Duty Claim and Provides New Guidance on Director Independence
  • Court of Chancery Addresses Standing to Bring Fiduciary Duty Claims Following a Freeze-Out Merger
  • Court of Chancery Invalidates Fee-Shifting Bylaw

Governance Update

SEC Update

Tax Update

Asia Update

UK Update

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