HOUSTON, June 23, 2009 – Gibbs & Bruns LLP of Houston announced today that it achieved a record $1.7 billion settlement package for its client, Huntsman Corporation, in the widely followed trial of Huntsman’s claims against Credit Suisse and Deutsche Bank. Under the terms of the settlement, Credit Suisse and Deutsche Bank will pay Huntsman $632 million cash and will provide Huntsman with $1.1 billion of financing through issuances of notes and bonds on favorable terms.
The case settled following a week of jury selection and an additional week of trial. It began with opening statements by Gibbs & Bruns partners Robin Gibbs and Kathy Patrick. They told the jury that the case would open a window into how “these enormous investment banks wield enormous power” and that the jurors would have an opportunity at the end of the case to “send a message from Main Street in Conroe to Wall Street and the financial capitals of Europe.”
The trial included a superb three-day appearance on the witness stand by Huntsman’s CEO, Peter Huntsman. Presented on direct examination by Gibbs, Huntsman told the entire story of the case. According to a report in The American Lawyer, “In virtually every exchange, Huntsman held up well, neither appearing hostile nor ceding any points” during his full-day cross-examination by the Banks’ lead counsel, Irv Terrell of Baker Botts L.L.P. Closing out the first week of trial were riveting cross-examinations of two bankers by Gibbs & Bruns’s Jean Frizzell in which he obtained confirmation of many of Huntsman’s allegations. Also testifying was Huntsman director, Nolan Archibald.
The second week of trial began with Patrick’s examination of Huntsman expert witness, Quentin Mimms, who explained mark-to-market accounting to the jury and quantified the Banks’ losses on particular dates relevant to the case. Before the settlement was announced, the jury also heard testimony from two additional investment bankers, Michael Paasche of Deutsche Bank and David Maletta of Credit Suisse.
The settlement closes the final chapter in a dispute that began last year when Huntsman’s merger partner Hexion and its owner Apollo filed a preemptive suit in Delaware to try to get out of the merger. Gibbs & Bruns uncovered the Bank actions that led to the Texas trial during discovery in the Delaware lawsuit. Huntsman settled its claims against Apollo and Hexion in December 2008, and the settlement achieved this week also ends the Banks’ effort to obtain indemnity from Apollo and Hexion, as the Banks have agreed to release that claim as a part of this settlement.
According to Gibbs, the case the firm put on at trial was “a thing of beauty to behold as it unfolded. Truly this is one of our firm’s proudest hours.”
The trial team for Gibbs & Bruns included partners: Robin Gibbs, Kathy Patrick, Jean Frizzell, Jeff Kubin, Jeremy Doyle, and John Black, and associates: Laura Kissel, Laurel Boatright, Matt Cooper, and Ashley McKeand. Huntsman was also represented by local counsel, Dan Downey of Dan Downey PC, and by appellate counsel, David Gunn of Beck Redden & Secrest, L.L.P.
About Gibbs & Bruns LLP
Gibbs & Bruns LLP, founded in 1983, is a leading boutique law firm engaging in high-stakes business and commercial litigation. The firm is renowned for its representation of both plaintiffs and defendants in complex matters, including securities, energy, director and officer liability, fraud and fiduciary claims, institutional investor claims, legal malpractice, intellectual property, contract, construction, antitrust, and partnership disputes. Gibbs & Bruns is routinely recognized as a top commercial litigation firm in the U.S. For more information, please visit www.gibbsbruns.com.
For more information, please contact:
Tanya K. Urban
Director of Client Relations
Gibbs & Bruns LLP