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Manufacturing Co. Strikes Deal In ESOP Share Inflation Suit


February 9, 2023

A retail display manufacturing company has agreed to settle a proposed class action filed in Illinois federal court alleging it violated federal benefits law when it sold inflated company shares to workers through their employee stock ownership plan in a $106 million deal.

Triad Manufacturing Inc. workers James Smith and Jerry Honse; Triad’s board of directors; and the ESOP’s trustee, GreatBanc Trust Co., alerted the court Wednesday that they’ve reached an agreement on the financial terms of a settlement to shutter the suit alleging Employee Retirement Income Security Act violations.

U.S. District Judge Ronald A. Guzman agreed Thursday to pause court deadlines in the case given that a settlement is on the horizon, and said that the parties should file a motion for preliminary approval on the deal by March 21.

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Attorney Mary J. Bortscheller, who represents the workers, told Law360 on Thursday that she is very pleased her team has secured a settlement for their clients and the proposed class.

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The workers are represented by Michelle C. Yau, Mary J. Bortscheller and Daniel R. Sutter of Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC and by Nina Wasow and Dan Feinberg of Feinberg Jackson Worthman & Wasow LLP.

Read the article on Law360 (subscription required).