Alexander L. Cheney is a partner in the Litigation Department. His practice focuses on complex commercial litigation, including shareholder derivative actions, other corporate governance and control disputes, securities violations, and bankruptcy litigation. Alex also is retained by clients to conduct confidential investigations, particularly with respect to allegations of workplace misconduct. Prior to joining Willkie’s San Francisco office, Alex was a partner in the Firm’s New York office.
Shareholder Derivative Actions, and Corporate Governance and Control
- Citigroup Board of Directors: Derivative action alleging failure to comply with anti-money laundering laws. (Del. Ch.)
- Charles Ergen, founder and chairman of DISH Network: Derivative litigation alleging breaches of fiduciary duty and usurpation of a corporate opportunity. (D. Nev.)
- Sarissa Capital Management: Proxy contest litigation involving pharmaceutical company Innoviva. (Del. Ch.)
- CBS Corporation: Action to compel inspection of company books and records under Section 220 of the Delaware General Corporation Law. (Del. Ch.)
- Represented funds in advance notice bylaw litigation; obtained reversal of Delaware Court of Chancery's decision compelling the funds to count votes for activist shareholder's nominees.
Securities & Finance
- CBS Corporation: Putative class action alleging violations of Sections 10(b) and 20(a) of the 1934 Act and Rule 10b-5. (S.D.N.Y.)
- L-5 Healthcare Partners, LLC: Litigation to enforce its preemptive rights under a share purchase agreement. (Del. Ch.)
Employment and Investigations
- CBS Radio: Action alleging racial discrimination, gender discrimination, retaliation, and a hostile work environment. (S.D.N.Y.)
- SHOWTIME: Action alleging gender discrimination on the set of the series, The Affair. (S.D.N.Y.)
- Confidential: Conducted investigations into allegations of misconduct by corporate executives and employees.
- Bankruptcy of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico.: Represented the Agent for the Puerto Rico Sales Tax Financing Corporation (COFINA) in dispute over ownership of $20 billion in tax proceeds, which The Wall Street Journal called “one of the thorniest conflicts in Puerto Rico’s unprecedented, court-supervised bankruptcy.”
- In re Neiman Marcus Group LTD LLC.: Represented disinterested managers in connection with investigation into prepetition transactions.
- In re Pace Industries, LLC, et al.: Successfully defeated minority shareholder’s motion seeking to dismiss debtors’ chapter 11 cases as unauthorized. The bankruptcy court’s precedent-setting decision represents the first time that any court has invalidated a bona fide shareholder’s right in a certificate of incorporation to consent to a company’s voluntary bankruptcy filing.
- In re LightSquared Inc., et al.: Represented the founder and controlling stockholder of Dish Network in what has been described as “one of the longest and most litigious bankruptcies in recent years.”
- In re Nine West Holdings, Inc.: Represented certain unsecured bondholders of Nine West.
Other Complex Commercial Litigation Matters
- SaaS Company: Confidential representation concerning alleged breaches of uptime commitments.
- CIP Capital Partners: Post-closing purchase price adjustment dispute in connection with the sale of a portfolio company. (Del. Ch.)
- Martha Stewart Living: Litigation arising out of a licensing agreement for the development of Martha Stewart branded pet products. (N.Y. Sup. Comm. Div.)
- Enstor Gas LLC: Action alleging theft of trade secrets. (Tex. Dist. Harris Co.)