Relevant Group sues Ten Five Hospitality over Mother Wolf trademark

Legal fight comes as Ten Five allegedly plans Las Vegas outpost of popular LA eatery

Relevant Group’s Grant King and Ten Five Hospitality’s Dan Daley (Getty, Ten Five Hospitality)
Relevant Group’s Grant King and Ten Five Hospitality’s Dan Daley (Getty, Ten Five Hospitality)

Relevant Group is fighting for control over the intellectual property of Mother Wolf, a popular Italian restaurant at its Citizen News building in Hollywood, after losing two hotels to foreclosure earlier this year.

Relevant has filed a lawsuit against Ten Five Hospitality, run by former Relevant Chief Operating Officer Dan Daley, alleging Daley has conspired “to steal corporate opportunities” and open a restaurant under the Mother Wolf name in Las Vegas. The complaint was filed in a Nevada court last month and was provided to TRD by Relevant’s attorneys. 

“Ten Five and Daley know they are not authorized to and do not have rights to use the Mother Wolf IP for their own benefit,” Relevant alleges in its complaint. 

The latest suit has escalated litigation between Ten Five and Relevant over an operating agreement for Mother Wolf and its associated intellectual property. 

In January, Ten Five sued Relevant in a California court, alleging an “overt and planned effort to steal Ten Five’s business.” In its complaint, Ten Five also alleges Relevant barred the management firm from the Mother Wolf premises and “decided that they no longer wanted to share fees and profits.”

Relevant, run by Grant King, has denied the allegations in court documents since. 

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And the firm has take further steps, filing a separate cross-complaint against Ten Five that claims Daley helped Relevant develop a mini-empire of hotels in Hollywood, but abandoned the projects when financial issues arose because of the pandemic. 

Instead of working to “mitigate” the financial issues, Daley founded Ten Five Hospitality in an effort to transfer over some of Relevant’s “most valuable assets,” Relevant alleges. Those “assets” include the intellectual property associated with Mother Wolf and other restaurants and contracts to manage these businesses.

“Daley intentionally and substantially worsened [Relevant’s financial] condition, deepening the Thompson and Tommie hotels’ insolvency,” Relevant said in its cross-complaint. 

In April 2021, Relevant turned to New York-based Machine Investment Group and Taconic Capital for a $72 million mezzanine loan to help finish construction of two hotels — the Tommie and Thompson hotels on Selma and Wilcox avenues in Hollywood. 

Relevant alleges Daley — acting then as COO — and its former Chief Financial Officer Andrew Shayne pushed another executive, Vincent Chen, to take the financing, but did not explain that they “expected” Relevant would eventually lose the properties. 

Relevant did not default on Machine’s mezzanine loan, but breached certain covenants, leading Machine to file for a foreclosure on both hotels. The foreclosure went ahead on Feb. 28 and both hotels are now owned by the mezzanine lenders. 

“We expect the court to set aside the wrongfully obtained hotel and food and beverage management agreements,” Jennifer Recine, a Kasowitz Benson Torres lawyer for Relevant, said in statement, “and confirm that Ten Five Hospitality and Mr. Daley have no rights in the intellectual property for the food and beverage concepts.”

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