WILMINGTON, Del.—Two top Cooper Tire & Rubber Co. executives testified on the first day of a three-day trial in Delaware Chancery Court on Cooper's motion to force Apollo Tyres Ltd. to consummate its proposed $2.5 billion merger with Cooper.
Cooper filed suit Oct. 4 after Apollo sought to reduce its per-share offer for Cooper's outstanding shares by $2.50, to $32.50 from $35.
Among the issues brought up during testimony Nov. 5 was whether Apollo requested the per-share reduction after overestimating the cost of an agreement with the United Steelworkers union. Other issues included whether Cooper overestimated to Apollo its earnings outlook, and also whether Cooper underrepresented to Apollo the chances of trouble from Chengsan Group Co. Ltd., Cooper's joint-venture partner in China.
Cooper CEO Roy V. Armes testified about a Sept. 25, 2013, telephone conversation with Apollo's vice chairman, whom he said estimated the cost of a deal with the USW at $75 million-$125 million.