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Airgas Brief to Delaware Chancery Court

Airgas Brief to Delaware Chancery Court

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Published by: DealBook on Dec 13, 2010
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IN THE COURT OF CHANCERY OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE
)AIR PRODUCTS AND CHEMICALS, INC., ))
Plaintiff 
, ) C.A. No. 5249-CC)v. ))AIRGAS, INC., PETER MCCAUSLAND,JAMES W. HOVEY, PAULA A. SNEED, DA-VID M. STOUT, ELLEN C. WOLF, W.THACHER BROWN, RICHARD C. ILL, LEEM. THOMAS AND JOHN C. VAN RODEN,JR.,)))))))
 Defendants
. )))IN RE AIRGAS INC. SHAREHOLDERLITIGATION))C.A. No. 5256-CC)
DEFENDANTS’ SUPPLEMENTAL POST-TRIAL BRIEFIN RESPONSE TO THE COURT’S DECEMBER 2, 2010 LETTER ORDER
POTTER ANDERSON & CORROON LLPOF COUNSEL:Kenneth B. ForrestTheodore N. MirvisMarc WolinskyJoshua A. NaftalisJasand Mock Charles D. CordingWACHTELL, LIPTON, ROSEN & KATZ51 West 52nd StreetNew York, New York 10019(212) 403-1000Donald J. Wolfe, Jr. (No. 285)Kevin R. Shannon (No. 3137)Berton W. Ashman, Jr. (No. 4681)Ryan W. Browning (No. 4989)Hercules Plaza1313 North Market Street, 6th FloorP.O. Box 951Wilmington, Delaware 19801(302) 984-6000Dated: December 10, 2010
 
 Attorneys for Defendants
 
 
TABLE OF CONTENTSPage
THE SUPREME COURT’S BYLAW DECISION SUPPORTS THE AIRGASBOARD’S USE OF THE COMPANY’S RIGHTS PLAN AND OTHER DEFENSES................1THE COURT’S NUMBERED QUESTIONS.................................................................................31. The claim that the Airgas Board breached its fiduciary duties byrejecting Air Products’ $65.50 offer is moot. There is no basis for theBoard to issue any decision with respect to Air Products’ $70 offer.......................32. An inadequate offer is a cognizable threat under
Unocal
........................................53. Airgas does not presently intend to hold a special meeting in June2011 and has not yet determined when it will hold its 2011 annualmeeting.....................................................................................................................54. The unrebutted evidence demonstrates that Air Products could call aspecial meeting to attempt to remove the Airgas Board..........................................65. Supreme Court precedent uniformly supports Airgas’ use of itsrights plan.................................................................................................................86. Bedrock principles of Delaware law confirm the central role of a boardin the takeover contest...........................................................................................107. Airgas’ shareholder profile consists of an unusually high percentage of arbs with highly leveraged positions......................................................................158. The market’s reaction to the Supreme Court’s bylaw ruling confirmsthe Board’s view on Airgas’ standalone value and the inadequacy of Air Products’ offer.................................................................................................209. The equities strongly support keeping Airgas’ rights plan in place toensure that the Board can extract full and fair value in any sale of thecompany.................................................................................................................21ADDENDUM.............................................................................................................................A-1
 
 - ii -
TABLE OF AUTHORITIESCases Page
 Airgas, Inc.
v.
 Air Prods. & Chems., Inc.
,2010 WL 4734305 (Del. 2010)..................................................................................1-2, 13
 Bebchuk 
v.
CA, Inc.,
 902 A.2d 737, 740 (Del. Ch. 2006) ....................................................................................4
Chesapeak Corp.
v.
Shore,
 771 A.2d 293 (Del. Ch. 2000) ............................................................................................4
City Capital Assocs. Ltd. Partnership
v.
 Interco Inc.
,551 A.2d 787 (Del. Ch. 1988)...........................................................................8, 11, 12, 13
 Grace Bros
.
 Ltd.
v.
Farley Indus., Inc.
,450 S.E.2d 814 (Ga. 1994)................................................................................................18
Grand Met. Pub. Ltd.
v.
Pillsbury Co.
,558 A.2d 1049 (Del. Ch. 1988)...........................................................................................8
  In re CNX Gas Corp. S’holders Litig.
,2010 WL 2291842 (Del. Ch.)...........................................................................................16
 In re CNX Gas Corp. S’holders Litig.
,2010 WL 2705147 (Del. Ch.)............................................................................................12
 In re Cox Commc’ns, Inc. S’holders Litig.
,879 A.2d 604 (Del. Ch. 2005)...........................................................................................16
 In re Digex Inc. S’holders Litig.
,789 A.2d 1176 (Del. Ch. 2000).........................................................................................16
 In re Dollar Thrifty S’holder Litig.
,2010 WL 3503471 (Del. Ch.)...........................................................................................12
 In re IAC/InterActive Corp
.,948 A.2d 471 (Del. Ch. 2008) .........................................................................................3-4
 In re Pure Res., Inc. S’holders Litig.
,808 A.2d 421 (Del. Ch. 2002)...........................................................................................17
 In re Unitrin, Inc. S’holders Litig.
,1994 WL 698483 (Del. Ch.)...............................................................................................9
Kahn
v.
 MSB Bancorp, Inc.
,1998 WL 409355 (Del. Ch.).............................................................................................10

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