INDIANAPOLIS — The former chief executive officer of Marsh Supermarkets here has filed a countersuit against the company that he used to run, claiming he is owed $2.1 million in salary and benefit payments.
The action follows a suit filed earlier this year by the chain against Don E. Marsh, the former CEO and the son of the company's founder, in which it accused him of fraud by diverting company funds for his personal use. That suit alleged that the chain was not obligated to provide ongoing compensation to the former CEO as previously agreed because his actions should have voided his employment contract.
“It was never my intention to fight Marsh Supermarkets, the company founded by my father in 1931,” said Don Marsh in a statement provided to SN last week. “Unfortunately, the out-of-state venture capitalist group that acquired Marsh has attacked me personally with false and flagrant accusations and has refused to honor the terms of my employment agreement with the company.”
In 2006, Sun Capital Partners, Boca Raton, Fla., acquired the regional chain, which was publicly held but controlled by the Marsh family, for about $88 million.
In a prepared statement issued by Marsh Supermarkets' attorneys, the company said, “We are disappointed this matter has progressed to this point, as we have made every effort to resolve the issues with Mr. Marsh. This is not a personal issue toward him. However, we continue to stand by our claims.”
In his countersuit, Don Marsh denies most of the allegations from the original suit. He explains that the “executive voucher” system used at Marsh, which allowed company executives to be reimbursed for business expenses, was within the accepted accounting standards. The company claims Don Marsh had used that system for personal expenses.