Revlon billionaire's daughter locked in legal battle over $600 million fortune

By Michelle Yeomans

- Last updated on GMT

Revlon billionaire's daughter locked in legal battle over $600 million fortune

Related tags Shareholder Stock U.s. securities and exchange commission

It’s barely been a week since Revlon made headlines agreeing to pay out a $850,000 fine to settle claims that it misled shareholders, now its chairman Ron Perelman has been thrust into the spotlight for allegedly bankrolling his daughter’s legal battle over a $600 million fortune.

The cosmetic billionaire’s daughter Samantha Perelman alleges her uncle James Cohen, CEO of Hudson Media took advantage of her dying grandfather to rewrite his will, a version that would ultimately leave her out of an inheritance on his passing in 2012.

According to court papers, under the new provisions, the thwarted heiress lost an outright bequest of $25 million, a $5 million trust fund, her grandfather’s Englewood, N.J., home and her share in the Palm Beach mansion. She also was forced to repay a $10 million loan her mother got from Robert Cohen.

To date her uncle has denied the claims, insisting that his father always intended to give him the family business, which he helped run for 30 years and is now suggesting in those same court papers that his father effectively disinherited Samantha because he disliked her father, Ron.

Meanwhile; media outlets such as the Daily News are reporting the chairman to be bankrolling the legal battle, however his daughter insists she’s the one who will be leading the fight when the case goes to trial in September.

There is this misconception that it’s two battling tycoons on each side of the Hudson​,” she told the Daily News. “This is my fight. At the end of the day, it’s a 55-year-old man who wants to get his way faced by a 22-year-old girl who knows what the intentions of her mother and grandfather would have been,” she said. “I’ve been completely washed out of the family​.”

Revlon also in courts over 'misleading' issue

As aforementioned the beauty brand itself made headlines last week after announcing it had agreed to pay a $850,000 penalty to settle U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission charges that it violated federal securities laws by misleading shareholders during a ‘going private transaction.’

SEC found Revlon to be engaged in ‘ring fencing’ that deprived its independent board members from knowing critical information during a voluntary-exchange offer to pay down debt owed to its controlling shareholder. However, it should be noted that to date, the cosmetic giant hasn’t admitted to or denied the agency's findings.

"Going-private transactions create opportunities for shareholder abuse and can have coercive effects on minority shareholders​," said the SEC's division of enforcement associate director, Antonia Chion at the time. "By erecting informational barriers, Revlon kept critically important information from its board and, in turn, misled investors."

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