Claim against the founder of a global group of companies

Hausfeld acted for the founder of a large international business in relation to a dispute about a proportion of the £90 million proceeds of sale of the group.

Our client founded a global group of companies that grew significantly over several decades and which was sold in 2018 for more than £90 million. Two former minority shareholders threatened to bring a claim, alleging that they were entitlement to a share of the proceeds.

The dispute

Before the sale, our client and his family were the majority shareholders in the key entities. Former minority shareholders in two of the entities, who signed a power of attorney authorising our client to sell their shares and received net proceeds in accordance with their shareholdings, threatened a claim against our client relating to the sale. They alleged that our client had promised to ensure that they would receive a certain percentage of the total proceeds of the group if and when it was sold, amounting to an alleged £1,500,000.

Our client denied the claim, which was contractual but also involved equitable and company law issues, on various grounds. There was a longstanding personal and professional relationship between the parties, meaning the dispute was not only of financial but also of personal importance to our client.


Hausfeld engaged in pre-action correspondence with the minority shareholders and deterred them from issuing a pre-action disclosure application and proceedings in the High Court. We attended a successful virtual pre-action mediation in late 2020, during which a confidential settlement was agreed, without the expense and disruption of court proceedings to our client.