Promega’s Linton fights back

Responding to disgruntled Promega shareholders who filed suit in July charging that CEO and founder Bill Linton manipulated his way to majority control of the company’s stock, Linton and his attorneys have filed a motion to dismiss the case.

According to the Wisconsin State Journal, Linton’s attorneys are charging the shareholders, led by Nathan Brand and Ted Kellner, with greenmailing, or purchasing enough shares to threaten a takeover, thereby forcing the company and other shareholders to pay an inflated price to retain control.

Promega’s stock sold for 36 cents per share in 1984, and last fall the company offered to buy back the stock at $383 per share. The disgruntled shareholders offered to purchase the company's stock for $625 per share (about $1.2 billion) at one point last year.