Bruce Levenson has sued the insurance company, AIG, on behalf of his investment group that had previously owned the Atlanta Hawks Basketball and Entertainment LLC. The claim he is litigating is that AIG has committed breach of contract and bad faith in their responsibility to cover the settlement of a lawsuit brought by former employee, Danny Ferry. Levenson is holding AIG in default in making payment of the legal settlement ordered in 2015.
This lawsuit is after-the-fact, as Levenson’s group no longer owns the team. This means that nothing in the lawsuit affects the Hawks or their current owners, the Ressler Group, in any way. This all started after former managing team employee, Danny Ferry, won a judgement from his wrongful termination lawsuit. Bruce Levenson has a legal insurance contract to prove that AIG is responsible to pay for such a judgement. AIG refuses to even acknowledge the issue, much less pay their contractual obligations. The public has never yet learned that actual judgement amount that was privately awarded by a court to Ferry.
Bruce Levenson became involved in publishing early on. He remained steadfastly in that industry until fairly recently. Now, he’s a Forbes billionaire and invests in many businesses outside of publishing. He has started several restaurants and gotten involved in owning and managing professional sports teams. This is what led him to such an intimate investment in the Atlanta Hawks. After buying the Hawks, his investment owner group also bought the local hockey team, the Atlanta Thrashers. While they were at it, they went ahead and bought the Phillips Arena stadium.