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BUNKER INDEX :: Price Index, News and Directory Information for the Marine Fuel Industry
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Aegean and RBM to try and resolve their differences in HEC case

Both parties agree to enter into negotiations as litigation proceedings are halted for three weeks.

Image credit: Pixabay CC0 Public Domain

Updated on 22 Mar 2018 12:17 GMT

The US District Court Southern District of New York has issued a Stipulation and Scheduling Order in the case between RBM Holdings and bunker firm Aegean Marine Petroleum Network Inc, where both parties have agreed to enter into negotiations in a bid to resolve their differences.

As a result, litigation proceedings will be stayed for a period of three weeks, until April 12, and the court's temporary restraining order (TRO) shall remain in force during this period.

Both parties have agreed that the stay may be extended for one week upon notice to the court.

While negotiations take place, Aegean has also accepted that no changes will be made to the composition of its board of directors.

As Bunker Index previously reported, the March 12 court order granted a 14-day TRO up until March 26 after a legal complaint was filed on March 8 by RBM - a limited liability company that was formed earlier this month by Aegean shareholders Tyler Baron, Justin Moore and August Roth - which argues that the agreement to acquire maritime waste specialist HEC Europe was structured "for the benefit of insiders at the expense of the plaintiff and other minority shareholders".

Then, on March 16, the District Judge presiding over the case, Loretta Preska, decided that there was "good cause" to extend the TRO for an additional fourteen days, arguing that there were a number of causes for delay.

Aegean had originally announced the agreement to acquire HEC Europe on February 20. The company is owned and controlled by Aegean's founder, Dimitris Melissanidis, in addition to certain members of his family and the Agiostratitis family.

During a merger and acquisitions call held last month, president Johnathan McIlroy explained the reason for the HEC takeover, saying: "The synergies between Aegean and HEC provide a very compelling strategic rationale. HEC's growth strategy is consistent with Aegean's model. HEC not only offers additional recurring revenue streams, but it also capitalizes on strong industry tailwinds all the while forming a strong combined platform to expedite growth for both segments. We believe this complementary structure will materialize into significant shareholder value.

"We see our investment in HEC not just as a means to drive stronger growth and higher profitability at the company, but also as a chance to improve the environmental sustainability and social accountability of our organization. As the world and our business continues to get more environmentally conscious, we at Aegean want to take a leadership role as we look ahead to 2020 and beyond."

Related Links:

Court extends restraining order on Aegean's HEC takeover to April 9
HEC overview and reasons for Aegean acquisition
Aegean shareholder group 'gravely concerned' by board's 'silence'
Aegean buys Melissanidis-owned firms; founder's group to become biggest shareholder
Aegean shareholder group nominates director candidates for next AGM
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