Jury Refuses to Find Against Odessa Pumps; Awards It $2.4 Million October 18, 2023
HOUSTON – A Harris County jury awarded AZA client Odessa Pumps $2.4 million in attorneys’ fees in a breach of contract case against GR Energy and its affiliates over a 2021 asset purchase. GR Energy sought approximately $30 million but took nothing.
This is AZA’s 17th trial this year. In winning this case, it has now defeated three of its top competing trial firms in 2023 – Gibbs & Bruns, Yetter Coleman and Smyser Kaplan & Veselka.
Odessa Pumps, a DistributionNOW company, is a provider of pump products in the energy industry. In 2021, Odessa Pumps bought Flex Flow, a horizontal pumping system business, from GR Energy. Later, both sides sued each other over issues including breach of contract, a noncompete promise and unpaid fees.
Before the trial began, GR Energy paid Odessa Pumps on one accounting adjustment claim. In trial, GR Energy failed to prove to the jury in Judge Michael Gomez’s court that Odessa Pumps had slowed the Flex Flow business in bad faith to avoid paying GR Energy a $30 million earnout amount. Odessa Pumps explained it was the market’s fault, not some intentional plot to make less money.
“Juries get the right results. Our client, and we at AZA, are excited to see Odessa Pumps be free of this $30 million claim,” said AZA lawyer Nathan Campbell. He tried the case with partners Joe Ahmad, Jason McManis, Judge Daryl Moore and John Zavitsanos, and associates Angela Peterson, Hailey Pulman, and Karina Sanchez-Peralta.
The Harris County case is Odessa Pumps and Equipment Inc. v. GR Lift, L.P. et al. Case number 2022-16349 in the 129th Civil District Court.
AZA, or Ahmad, Zavitsanos & Mensing, is a Houston-based law firm that is home to true courtroom lawyers with a formidable track record in complex commercial litigation, including energy, healthcare, intellectual property and business dispute cases. AZA is recognized by Chambers USA 2023 as among the best in Texas in commercial law and intellectual property; has been listed by U.S. News – Best Lawyers’ Best Law Firms as one of the country’s best commercial litigation firms for 11 years running; has been named Litigation Department of the Year by Texas Lawyer three times, including for 2021; and was previously dubbed a Texas Powerhouse law firm by Law360.