Tuesday, September 08, 2009
The Court of Special Appeals of Maryland, has ruled "Judgment Affirmed in favor of Strategic Management Partners, Inc." in the case of John C. Dodd, III, and S2i Corporation, the Appellants, versus Strategic Management Partners, Inc., the Appellee. The finding affirms all of the Circuit Court's Findings, which are in favor of Strategic Management Partners, Inc. The three Judge Panel seated Honorable Judges Joseph F. Murphy, Jr., Mary Ellen Barbera, and James A. Kenney III, who heard Oral Argument on January 2, 2008, and Filed their Opinion April 8, 2009, after more than 15 months of deliberation. The Court found that Mr. Dodd failed to provide any evidence to support his claims. The Court also found that Mr. John M. Collard, Chairman, Strategic Management Partners, Inc., delivered what was asked of him, and that he was what he represented himself to be. The Court noted Mr. Collard's qualifications and abilities in turnaround management and corporate governance.
After a two-day trial (Jan/Feb 2007) and a short deliberation, the jury returned a verdict in favor of Strategic Management Partners, Inc. [SMP] of Annapolis, Maryland, Plaintiff, and against John C. Dodd, III of Easton, Maryland, and S2i Corporation of Easton & Annapolis, Maryland, the Defendants, awarding $97,735.22 to Plaintiff, SMP. Judgment issued Feb. 1, 2007. The Case was tried before a Jury in the Circuit Court for Talbot County, Easton, Maryland before the Honorable Judge Sidney S. Campen. This case was for breach of contract where Mr. Dodd refused to pay for work that was solicited, completed, and invoiced to Mr. Dodd and S2i Corporation. Mr. Dodd and S2i were both parties to a contract entered into in May 2003 when Mr. Collard was hired as a consultant. The Trial Court stated that "the jury may find the reason he [Dodd] isn't paying this fee is because the litigation went sour on him." The Trial Court noted that Mr. Collard is a Certified Turnaround Professional who has a wealth of knowledge and business experience in turnaround management, mergers & acquisitions, and helping sick or ailing companies.
Strategic Management Partners, Inc. was hired as an expert to consult with Mr. Dodd, S2i, and Semmes, Bowen & Semmes, attorneys in an underlying litigation, and was identified as an expert witness in the case. The underlying Case was filed in the Circuit Court for Talbot County between S2i Corporation and John C. Dodd, Plaintiffs versus Paul P. Rakowski, etal., Defendants. The jury issued a verdict in favor of Defendants. Shortly before Trial, Mr. Dodd stopped paying his bills to SMP, among others, which prompted this second action.
Mr. Collard said, "We are very pleased with the outcome of the Appeal, the trial, the judgment award and interest. This all could have been avoided if only Mr. Dodd had paid his legitimate bills on a timely basis, as promised by contract and reiterated by signed payment plan. Litigation is always a complicated, time-consuming, drawn out process. Mr. Dodd spent far more in litigation fees, in both this and the underlying matter, than the basis of either of the complaints. Mr. Dodd chose not to pay all fees for contracted and delivered services presumably because it didn't suit him. Mr. Dodd persists in defying the judgment, and has refused to pay as directed."
Mr. Collard is often asked to consult or named to senior executive roles like Chief Executive or Restructuring Officer to lead companies during interim and turnaround periods. Collard is viewed by clients and peers as a leading expert in turnaround management, managing and bringing about change in companies, corporate renewal governance, strategic repositioning, improving value for all stakeholders [owners, employees, creditors, customers, lenders, investors], mergers & acquisitions, divestitures, and investing in underperforming distressed troubled companies.
Mr. Collard said, "my job is often to bring leadership and stability to guide the company, set strategies, rebuild the team, and then hire my replacement. In this case I, as a turnaround professional, was asked for an opinion on how existing management performed improperly while S2i was deteriorating and stockholder's equity was eroding, and to explain their mismanagement of S2i Corporation." Strategic Management Partners often supports the private equity capital community and litigators in situations where executive turnaround leadership, corporate governance, lost valuation, investment recovery, or distressed investing are required.
Appeal: John C. Dodd, III, and S2i Corporation, the Appellants, versus Strategic Management Partners, Inc., the Appellee; Case No. 00380, September Term, 2007 in the Court of Special Appeals of Maryland, Annapolis, Maryland before the Honorable Judges Joseph F. Murphy, Jr., Mary Ellen Barbera, and James A. Kenney III, January 2, 2008 Oral Argument, Opinion Filed April 8, 2009. Judgment Affirmed. Verdict to affirm all of the Circuit Court's Findings in favor of Strategic Management Partners, Inc.
Litigation: Strategic Management Partners, Inc., the Plaintiff, versus John C. Dodd, III, and S2i Corporation, the Defendants; Case No. 20-C-06-005580 OC in the Circuit Court for Talbot County, Easton, Maryland before the Honorable Judge Sidney S. Campen. Judgment for Plaintiff SMP, February 1, 2007.
Attorney for Plaintiff and Appellee Strategic Management Partners, Inc.: Mr. C. Edward Hartman, III, Esquire, Hartman And Egeli, LLP, Annapolis, Maryland. www.HartmanEgeli.com
Attorney for Defendants and Appellants John C. Dodd, III and S2i Corporation: Mr. Michael J. Kopen, Esquire, Kopen & Collison, LLP, Easton, Maryland.
Underlying Litigation: S2i Corporation and John C. Dodd, Plaintiffs versus Paul P. Rakowski, Timothy S. Ward, Eric Pikus, James W. Kerr, Chesapeake Strategies Group, and James W. Kerr, P.A., Defendants; Case No. 20-C-02-004615 OT in the Circuit Court for Talbot County, Easton, Maryland before the Honorable Raymond E. Beck, Sr., August 2005. Verdict for Defendants. S2i was formerly known as Beckett Brown International.
Strategic Management Partners, Inc., the Plaintiff and Appellee, Annapolis, Maryland. Turnaround Management Experts. www.StrategicMgtPartners.com
# # #
John M. Collard
Strategic Management Partners, Inc.