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In re Texas Rangers Baseball Partners

United States Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Texas
431 B.R. 706 (2010)


Facts

The Texas Rangers Baseball Partners (the Rangers) (debtor) was owned by a partnership of equity owners. Thomas Hicks was the dominant member of the equity partnership and had indirect control over the team. The Rangers were in financial trouble, and the equity owners agreed to sell the Rangers to Express. The equity partners hired William Synder to represent the Rangers in the transaction. At the same time, Hicks was heavily in debt to a group of lenders, and these lenders had a contractual right to approve any sale of the team.  Hicks’s lenders objected to the sale. The Rangers filed for reorganization under chapter 11 of the bankruptcy code, in an attempt to cramdown the sale to Express over the lenders’ contractual veto. Snyder organized an auction procedure, which included Express as a stalking-horse bidder. The plan gave Express a guaranteed breakup fee of approximately 2 percent of the purchase price. Express would receive the breakup fee if another bidder won the auction. The bankruptcy court approved Snyder’s proposed auction procedure, and Hicks’s lenders filed a motion for reconsideration.

Rule of Law

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning (Lynn, J.)

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  • A “yes” or “no” answer to the question framed in the issue section;
  • A summary of the majority or plurality opinion, using the CREAC method; and
  • The procedural disposition (e.g. reversed and remanded, affirmed, etc.).

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