On Feb. 6, 2023, a team of Faegre Drinker litigators won summary judgment for Trystar LLC in the Court of Common Pleas in South Carolina, dismissing the claims against the company and a co-defendant.
In 2018, Bierer & Associates, which sells electric meters for utility line workers, sued Rick Kennerly, its former vice president of business development, alleging breach of fiduciary duty in connection with his multi-million-dollar “side hustle” as an independent sales representative. In 2021, Bierer added Trystar and other companies for whom Kennerly had sold products as additional defendants. The claims included trade secret misappropriation and aiding and abetting breach of fiduciary duty. After much discovery, the court concluded that Bierer had been on inquiry notice as to potential claims as far back as 2013. Therefore, the court granted summary judgment in favor of Trystar.
The Faegre Drinker team was led by business litigation partner John Ursu and included partners Jeffrey Justman and Deborah Ellingboe, counsel Nathaniel Zylstra, associates Adam Pabarcus and Elizabeth Slama and senior paralegal Teri McClintock. Corporate partners Ryan Miske and Chris Hofstad provided additional guidance and support, along with Tritura legal technology analyst Mitch Lies.
“This case was always too little, too late,” Ursu said. “We are glad the court saw it the same way.”