Ex-Sequoia Partner Goguen Calls Sex-Abuse Suit Extortion (Bloomberg, earlier)
Former Sequoia Capital partner Michael Goguen countersued the woman who claims he sexually abused her for more than a decade, alleging that she’d threatened to publicly accuse him of “false, horrific acts” unless he paid her $40 million in hush money. The venture capitalist accused Amber Laurel Baptiste of extortion in California state court in San Mateo, six days after she sued him. His 16-page countersuit, littered with intimate details of their affair, alleges that Baptiste was an exotic dancer when the two met, “first looking for a payday and later for revenge.” Goguen’s filing references thousands of e-mails and text messages with Baptiste to argue the affair was consensual. He said the relationship unraveled when he declined to “make a greater commitment” to Baptiste, according to the filing. He said Baptiste tried to pressure him to pay her by calling him a “rapist, murderer and pedophile.”
J.P. Morgan Readies Mortgage-Backed Deal (WSJ)
J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. is trying to sell new securities that would pass along most of the credit risk on $1.9 billion in mortgages, in an attempt to revive a debt market that has been largely left to the government since the financial crisis. The largest U.S. bank by assets is expected to price the residential mortgage-backed deal over the next two weeks. J.P. Morgan would hold 90% of the deal by keeping the safest parts, or the most senior tranches, and plans to sell off the riskier pieces to investors.
Blackstone Group Near Deal to Sell Hotel Portfolio to Anbang Insurance Group (WSJ)
Blackstone Group LP is selling a portfolio of U.S. luxury hotels to the Chinese owner of New York’s Waldorf Astoria, just months after buying it for $4 billion. China’s Anbang Insurance Group Co. is near a deal to buy Strategic Hotels & Resorts Inc. from a Blackstone-managed real-estate fund, according to people familiar with the situation. The price Anbang is paying couldn’t be determined, but Blackstone is expected to turn a profit after taking the company private in December.
Americans like legalized pot a lot more than Girl Scout cookies (NYP)
The legal marijuana biz raked in roughly $3.4 billion in 2015 — while the girls in green earned only about $780 million, according to Marijuana Business Daily. Legal pot sales are expected to double by 2020, according to the report.
Kanye West offers to redesign Clippers mascot Chuck the Condor (NYDN)
“Steve Ballmer can I please redesign the Clippers mascot,” the ranting rapper tweeted on Sunday. Introduced at the end of February, the Clippers’ mascot, Chuck the Condor, is a horrifying oversized bird with a pink face, pale blue beak, gray wings, bright feathers around its neck and red Chuck Taylor sneakers. The new mascot didn’t go over well, with fans lambasting the strange creature online. Despite not being tagged in the tweet, Clippers owner Steve Ballmer responded to Kanye’s offer. “Love Chuck but love your creativity. Lets talk. Lunch?” he tweeted a few hours later.
ValueAct's Ubben: Here's why oil could hit $100 (CNBC)
ValueAct Capital Management's founder and CEO Jeffrey Ubben said, as many companies cut labor forces, keeping up drilling activity will become "very difficult." The slowdown in production could drive crude to $100 by 2019, he said.
GE's CEO Earned $33 Million in 2015 Driving Industrial Overhaul (Bloomberg)
Excluding a change in pension value, Immelt’s adjusted compensation rose 14 percent to $23.4 million, GE said Monday in a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. His base salary of $3.8 million and bonus of $5.4 million bonus were little changed from the previous year.
Home With a Harry Potter-Style Chessboard Asks $22.9 Million (WSJ)
In addition to the chessboard, the grounds include a swimming pool, hot tub, horse barn, riding arena and trails for the owners’ collection of horses, donkeys, a goat and other animals.
'Unknown animal' measuring 13 feet long baffles authorities on Mexican beach (UPI)
Officials and residents in Acapulco, Mexico, said they are perplexed by the large carcass of a mysterious sea creature that washed up on shore. Civil Protection and Fire Acapulco posted a video to Facebook showing the 13-foot-long deflated carcass that washed up on Bonfil Beach this week. The post described the creature, which a resident pokes with a stick in the video, as an "unknown animal." Sabas de la Rosa Camacho, coordinator of Civil Protection and Fire, said the carcass does not appear to have a foul smell. De la Rosa Camacho told Daily 24 Hours the animal could be "a squid or a whale" and those who have examined the creature said it appears to have bones.