Bow Truss Coffee Roasters’ owner sues investor
November 1st, 2016
A war percolating between the owner of Bow Truss Coffee Roasters¬†and a Chicago investor has moved to the courts.
Philip Tadros, owner of Bow Truss and other food and beverage shops in Chicago, has sued Alan Matthew, who invested $25,000 in Bow Truss and tens of thousands more¬†in other startups headed by Tadros.
In the lawsuit, Tadros says Matthew breached his fiduciary duty as a company shareholder and defamed Tadros publicly. Tadros is seeking in excess of $50,000 in¬†damages.
Tadros told me he’s suing “to draw a legal line and document what (Matthew) has done and let the courts decide what he owes us in damages.”
Matthew didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.
In the suit filed in the Circuit Court of Cook County, Tadros says Matthew invested in Tadros’ companies over three years. Their business relationship “began to sour,” the filing says, when “Matthew apparently became dissatisfied with the return on his investments.”
The lawsuit says Matthew publicly criticized Tadros in a story in July by the weekly Crain’s business¬†magazine and on social media. The lawsuit also accuses Matthew of disclosing confidential documents “that were otherwise only available to officers and investors of Mr. Tadros’ businesses.”
That’s a breach of fiduciary duty by¬†a stockholder, the lawsuit points out.
The court filing says Tadros tried to return Matthew’s investment but that Matthew responded in an email “that he had voided the buyout check and would be returning it.”
In an interview, Tadros called Matthew “unreasonable.”
The lawsuit accuses Matthew of making public statements¬†that are “knowingly false” and with “malice.”
It adds that the comments damaged Tadros’s reputation and scared off business, including from¬†Hilton hotel, Merchandise Mart, University of Chicago and Whole Foods.