Phillips is a longtime veteran and former CEO of AEG Live who has toured for Bon Jovi, Justin Bieber, Kanye West, The Rolling Stones and Prince.
Loeffler is a longtime Music Director, Touring Director and Film Producer who directed the movie Why Dont We’s 2019, Unbelievable.
Why Don’t We was formed in September 2016, with the creation of the group company in the form of two LLC managed by managers, Signature Entertainment and PDM III, with stakes for the five members of the group. LLCs would retain the rights to manage all aspects of the group and the careers of its individual members and would own their creative output, while categorizing the five members as salaried employees, according to the management agreement signed by each member. LLCs also exclusively fund and manage the solo artist EBEN.
The following year, Phillips quit his post as director of one of the LLCs, Signature Entertainment, in order to accept a position at the head of LiveStyle, the company resulting from the bankruptcy of the promoter of EDM SFX. Phillips returned to manage Why Don’t We in 2020 and said Loeffler “waived his previous agreement to allow the claimant to resume the role of manager [of Signature Entertainment]According to a lawsuit filed against Loeffler Thursday in Los Angeles Superior Court.
Phillips wants a judge to kick Loeffler out of PDM III and return control to Phillips in a legal process known as dissociation, in which a judge orders a manager’s voting rights terminated if he turns out that the manager acted inappropriately or “willfully (and) persistently committed a material” material breach “of the financial interests of the entity.
In his complaint, Loeffler sues the five members of Why Don’t We for early breach of contract and Phillips for tortious interference in a commercial relationship following the group’s refusal to sign the agreement with the Atlantic. He claims damages. “Signature has the exclusive right to” advise, advise, direct and assist “” each member of the group “in relation to all matters relating to their career in all branches of the entertainment industry,” writes Loeffler’s lawyer , Michael r levin of Baker Law, in the lawsuit, which was filed in Orange County Circuit Court in Orlando, Florida. No hearing has yet been scheduled in this case.
Loeffler said Billboard in a statement that Phillips’ lawsuit is “baseless and in retaliation for our lawsuit against him.” He added: “The allegations now made by Mr Phillips have no basis and will be refuted in court.”
Phillips’ lawsuit also claims that Loeffler abused the members of Why Don’t We and “irreparably damaged” the management company he and Phillips set up to help further the careers of the burgeoning boy group.
Hollywood lawyer and litigator Howard King of Los Angeles-based law firm King, Holmes, Paterno & Soriano, represents Phillips and alleges in the lawsuit that if “Loeffler was living with [the band] in a rental property that had been set aside for them to develop music, ”he exhibited“ nightmarish behavior, ”including“ daily verbal abuse, yelling at them at the top of their lungs, sometimes for 10 to 20 minutes ”, and allegedly “Forced the five members to share two small bedrooms, even though the house had a free and unused bedroom upstairs.”
The lawsuit also claims Loeffler would monitor “almost every move they made” and “barely allow them to leave the house.” Loeffler didn’t allow them to have friends or visitors, didn’t feed them properly, and set off a house alarm every night, the code of which they didn’t know, to make sure they didn’t leave.
Lawyer and trial lawyer Alain gutman of Gutman Law represents the group and its individual members, all of whom began working with Loeffler when they were minors.
“My clients, the artists known as Why Don’t We, support Randy Phillips in the same way he’s supported us since the start of our careers,” Gutman said in a statement, citing the group.
King said the decision to terminate Phillips shocked the group and argued that the loss of the recording contract was Loeffler’s fault and “seriously tarnished Signature and PDM III’s most valuable assets (his relationship with Why Don’t We and Eben), perhaps irreparable. “
“After years of mental and financial abuse by Dave Loeffler and his associates, Randy Phillips seeks to salvage a deteriorating relationship with rising stars Why Don’t We and Eben with the co-owned production companies by Phillips, ”King said. Billboard in a report. “Loeffler’s mistreatment of these corporate primary assets seriously endangers the survival of the companies. For unknown reasons, other than perhaps professional jealousy, Loeffler attempted to interfere with Phillips’ role as the primary manager of these artists.
Phillips also accuses Loeffler of delaying the release of the band’s second album, The good times and the bad, until January 2021, when it was released as part of a license agreement with Atlantic. Phillips claims that Loeffler hired an unqualified friend to produce the album, despite his inexperience, and gave him 30% of the publishing royalties on the record. Phillips also accuses Loeffler of withholding a million dollar publication advance intended for members of Why Don’t We during the pandemic.
In addition to stripping Loeffler of his title as manager at PMI III, King asks a judge to establish “an additional measure that the Court considers just and appropriate”.