The Deal That Allegedly Never Died: Defending Against a Claimed Option to Purchase

15 October 2015 Publication
Author(s): Alexander Chae

Insights, Willamette Management Associates, Autumn 2015

The Facts of the Case

In the fall of 2002, Ted Miller, the former president, chief executive, and founder of Crown Castle, was approached by John Miller, a former chief executive of a publicly traded company and a Louisiana-based promoter, about coinvesting in an aircraft parts business in San Antonio and Virginia that was in bankruptcy.

The business opportunity that was initially proposed involved the purchase, out of bankruptcy, of the assets of three U.S. divisions of Fairchild Dornier. Fairchild Dornier was a manufacturer of turboprop-powered aircrafts that are primarily used by commuter airlines.

The three divisions in bankruptcy, Merlin Express Incorporated, Fairchild Gen-Aero Incorporated, and Metro Support Services, Inc., operated the Fairchild Dornier U.S. servicing and parts distribution center in San Antonio (the “FDUS Assets”).

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