Mediation to resolve the feud among owners of Billy Bob’s Texas continued through Monday and is expected to carry over into Tuesday in the hopes of reaching an amicable agreement, according to an attorney for one group of owners.
State District Judge Mike Wallach had ordered the two groups of owners into mediation on Friday in a final attempt to resolve the acrimony and reach an agreement that would prevent appointment of a receiver.
“The parties are hopeful that they can come to an agreement that is workable for all sides,” said Mark Torian, an attorney representing minority owners, including Concho Minick, president of Billy Bob’s and his allies, including a business owned by the family of former Fort Worth City Councilman Steve Murrin.
The group of majority owners, led by Brad Hickman and his family who own a 40 percent share of Billy Bob’s Texas, want to oust Concho Minick, whose continued employment as president is at the center of the dispute. Concho Minick’s father, Billy, is aligned with the majority owners against Concho Minick.
Last week, Dallas Mavericks General Manager Donnie Nelson asked to join as a party to the lawsuit aligned with Concho Minick and the Murrin family.
“Right now, Billy Bob’s is well-run and highly profitable,” Nelson stated during the hearing. “Much of this credit goes to Concho Minick.”
Witnesses testified during a three-day hearing last month that Hickman’s anger with Concho Minick is connected to the Stockyards redevelopment plan being undertaken by Hickman and California developer Majestic Realty. Hickman testified that he was “infuriated” at Concho Minick’s comments three years ago in an open forum before the Fort Worth City Council.
Concho Minick testified that his he had addressed the council as a private citizen and not as president of Billy Bob’s.
However, Hickman testified that he considered Concho Minick a public figure as president of Billy Bob’s and that his decision to speak against the Stockyards development plan, which 65 percent of Billy Bob’s owners support, was poor judgment. The $175 million plan will bring more shops and restaurants and add residences to the Stockyards.
Billy Bob’s operating agreement requires unanimous consent on major decisions such as firing the top manager and has led to a deadlock among the owners who don’t all agree that Concho Minick should be fired.
Minority owners claim their rights as owners dissolve if the company agreement is not enforced.
Majority owners claim Billy Bob’s certificate of formation supersedes the operating agreement and they do not need unanimous consent to fire Concho Minick.