BW Wins Appeal in $30 Million Contract Dispute
By: Michael Dee
The Iowa Supreme Court on February 7, 2020, held that BrownWinick client Homeland Energy Solutions, LLC (HES) had an enforceable contract with a former HES board member to repurchase the member’s units in HES. In 2013, HES entered into a contract with then-board member Steve J. Retterath to repurchase Retterath’s units in HES for $30 million. Shortly after entering into the contract, Retterath repudiated the contract and refused to accept payment and tender his unit certificates back to HES. HES filed suit asking the court to order Retterath to specifically perform his contractual obligations to sell back his units and turn over his unit certificates. Following a trial in 2017 in Polk County, Iowa, the court found in favor of HES and ordered Retterath to close on the transaction. Retterath appealed and offered a number of reasons for not performing his end of the contract, all of which the Supreme Court rejected.