Food fight

Smith & Wollensky CEO Alan Stillman really wants to sell the steakhouse chain to Joachim Splical's Patina Group - even if the $9.25 price is 50 cents a share lower than what's being offered by Houston-based Landry's Restaurant Group. And Landry's now claims in a letter to the Smith & Wollensky board that Stillman is looking out for himself instead of the S&W shareholders. That's because as part of the Patina deal, Stillman would buy back six of S&W's NY restaurants for $5.3 million. "We believe that these assets are being sold to Mr. Stillman at a discount to their fair market value," the letter said. There's also some grousing about the severance packages for senior S&W folks if the Patina deal goes through. Stillman's attorney says Landry's has it all wrong. Whatever. As for the stock, it closed at $9.85, which suggests that the gamesmanship might play out a bit longer.

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Mark Lacter
Mark Lacter created the LA Biz Observed blog in 2006. He posted until the day before his death on Nov. 13, 2013.
Mark Lacter, business writer and editor was 59
The multi-talented Mark Lacter
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