Massey Merger Proceeds: Investors steadfast in pursuit of claims

The West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals ruled on Tuesday, May 31, 2011, that a group of Massey Energy investors could not block the shareholder vote scheduled for Wednesday, June 1, 2011, on the proposed $7.1 billion sale of Massey Energy (NYSE: MEE) to Alpha Natural Resources (NYSE: ANR). The vote has now taken place in Alpha's favor, making the company the third largest producer of metallurgical coal in the world.

The merger follows controversy involving the takeover's potential effect on shareholder litigation filed against Massey Energy's officers and directors. On May 25, 2011, investors filed an emergency petition with the West Virginia Supreme Court asking that the shareholder vote be blocked, claiming that Massey Energy's officers and directors agreed to the merger to protect them from the lawsuits.

Badge Humphries, Motley Rice securities lawyer and lead counsel in the shareholder litigation, stated that "Trying to undo a merger after it is closed is a difficult task…The courts have compared it to unscrambling an egg." Listen to the full NPR story on the Massey shareholder vote.

Read full articles on the Massey merger in articles featured by The New York Times, Forbes, and The Register Herald.

Subscribers to The Wall Street Journal may also read more about the merger vote.

To learn more about shareholder derivative and merger and acquisition litigation, contact our securities team by email or call 1.800.768.4026.