On May 6, 2022, Anthony Ostlund won a $70.5 million plus legal fees total verdict/award in Minneapolis for Jim Koch against Koch Companies, Koch Industries, Randy Koch, and Dave Koch.
Rich Ostlund led our trial team of Randy Gullickson, Shannon Awsumb, Joe Janochoski and Shannon Flinn to a $12 million verdict, a $58.5 million stock buy-out, and an award of our client’s attorneys’ fees and expenses. The defendants, represented by three Minneapolis law firms, fought the case over four years and opposed any award from the jury, who instead found breach of contract and a lack of good faith by all defendants, awarding damages of $12 million. Post jury trial, defendants conceded the court ordered buy-out claim, but asserted Jim Koch should be paid no more than $28 million, which the court rejected by awarding $30.5 million more—for a stock buy-out of $58.5 million. The award of $70.5 million plus fees, including the $58.5 million stock buy-out award, is believed to be the highest ever awarded under the Minnesota Business Corporation Act, § 302A, et seq. The next highest share buy-out award of $45.2 million in Lund v. Lund under the Minnesota Business Corporation Act was in 2017 and was also achieved by another Anthony Ostlund trial team, led by Janel Dressen, Shannon Awsumb, and Rich Ostlund.
In the May edition of Minnesota Lawyer Monthly, Mr. Ostlund discussed the Koch decision, noting:
The Koch jury and the judge sent a powerful message about fundamental decency and fairness in this $70.5 million plus fees/expenses verdict and final judgment. I am very proud of our entire Anthony Ostlund team. Randy Gullickson and I have been trying these cases together for over 35 years; and I am equally proud of the next generation of leading Anthony Ostlund trial lawyers who are already continuing and expanding our deep core expertise in complex ownership/fiduciary duty/valuation cases.
The Koch trial victory was reported on in the Minneapolis Star Tribune (https://www.startribune.com/court-battle-over-koch-trucking-ends-as-judge-upholds-jurys-12-million-award-58-million-buyout/600172008/) and Minnesota Lawyer Monthly (https://minnlawyer.com/2022/05/19/trucking-firm-dispute-among-brothers-results-in-70m-buyout/).