Athene shareholders withdraw US lawsuits


Two lawsuits filed in New York courts have been withdrawn after Bermuda Chief Justice Narinder Hargun upheld claims by Bermudian-based Athene Holding Ltd that such matters are the exclusive jurisdiction of the island’s courts.

A US-based investor in Athene, Central Laborers Pension Fund, made a derivative complaint against private-equity firm Apollo Global Management LLC and Athene Asset Management LLC.

The plaintiff, on behalf of Athene shareholders, demanded damages for what it described as “looting” of Athene through “extravagantly expensive” fees paid for managing the reinsurer’s investment portfolio, according to the complaint, filed in the Supreme Court of New York on June 18.

The fees agreed for managing the portfolio of about $130 billion run into hundreds of millions of dollars per year.

Athene maintained that the suit should have been filed in Bermuda as the case hinged on the conduct of its directors, the Financial Times reported. According to the company’s by-laws, the FT said, any such matters must be resolved in Bermuda courts.

Mr Justice Hargun granted an ex parte temporary injunction on July 5, ordering a halt to the CLPF action in New York.

Thereafter, Cambria County Employees Retirement System — a public pension fund in Pennsylvania — launched a separate New York action, which made no reference to the conduct of directors. Cambria also sought an order from the New York court preventing Athene “from attempting to interfere with” the suit, according to a report in the FT.

However, before the matter could be heard in New York, Athene again sought relief from the Supreme Court of Bermuda, and Mr Justice Hargun ruled in favour of Athene.

The plaintiffs in the two matters subsequently withdrew the suits, citing the Bermuda injunctions, according to the FT.

Apollo, the co-defendant in both matters, said the claims were “completely without merit and would fail in any jurisdiction”, the FT reported. Calling the dismissals “a routine application of Athene’s by-laws, which clearly provide that Bermuda is the proper forum for litigation”, Apollo added that the two cases were brought by the same law firm and “were ultimately nothing more than a failed attempt to forum-shop”, the FT said.

A spokesman for Athene said the company had no comment.

You must be registered or signed-in to post comment or to vote.

Published Aug 11, 2019 at 4:42 pm (Updated Aug 11, 2019 at 11:57 pm)

Athene shareholders withdraw US lawsuits

What you
Need to
Know
1. For a smooth experience with our commenting system we recommend that you use Internet Explorer 10 or higher, Firefox or Chrome Browsers. Additionally please clear both your browser's cache and cookies - How do I clear my cache and cookies?
2. Please respect the use of this community forum and its users.
3. Any poster that insults, threatens or verbally abuses another member, uses defamatory language, or deliberately disrupts discussions will be banned.
4. Users who violate the Terms of Service or any commenting rules will be banned.
5. Please stay on topic. "Trolling" to incite emotional responses and disrupt conversations will be deleted.
6. To understand further what is and isn't allowed and the actions we may take, please read our Terms of Service
7. To report breaches of the Terms of Service use the flag icon

  • Take Our Poll

    • "Which of these is the worst political gaffe of modern times"
    • Craig Cannonier getting on that plane
    • 11%
    • Michael Fahy pressing on with Pathways to Status
    • 10%
    • Bob Richards's 'Money doesn't grow on trees' speech
    • 5%
    • Lt-Col David Burch and ATVs
    • 9%
    • Wayne Caines and the London cereal cafe
    • 44%
    • Zane DeSilva's mystery shopper cruise
    • 21%
    • Total Votes: 5373
    • Poll Archive

    Today's Obituaries

    eMoo Posts