When Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong invested in the troubled media company Tronc, he was greeted as a white knight. But a lawyer for Tronc is now accusing Soon-Shiong of making an “implicit threat” that he would abandon the company unless Tronc invested in his own medical diagnostics startup, NantHealth.
Soon-Shiong helped rescue Tronc from a hostile takeover attempt last May with an investment of more than $70 million. But he first tried to convince the publishing company to invest in the initial public offering of NantHealth, according to a letter from Tronc’s attorneys filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
“Tronc properly declined to invest in that company, since such an investment would have had no logical connection to its business operations in the publishing industry,” the attorneys wrote.