New Chapter 11 Filing - Hollister Construction Services LLC

Hollister Construction Services LLC

September 11, 2019

Sometimes it really pays to be a middleman. If you’re a middleman that can razzle dazzle potential claimants by saying you leverage a lot of cloud-based software, data integration apps and drones, you may even plow your way to $292mm in gross revenue. It’s all about tech these days.

NJ-based Hollister Construction Services LLC is a general construction firm that, in the course of providing construction management services, leverages the aforementioned tech. It doesn’t construct projects itself; rather, it engages in (i) design development, (ii) pre-development services, (iii) assisting with municipal approvals (iv) pre-construction services (including the subcontractor bidding process), and (iv) construction administration. Its projects are located across NJ and NY.

Here’s the thing: lots of tech and expertise are great but you still have to have a functional operating business. The economy has been charging and cranes are everywhere. The building business is booming. This is great if you’re ready to scale with the opportunity. Hollister apparently wasn’t up to the challenge. Per the company:

…recent and rapid expansion of the Debtor’s client base, combined with the Company’s underestimation of the costs of certain projects, resulted in the Company not being able to fully service all of its Project Owners’ projects. Likewise, Hollister was not able to ensure that Subcontractors were paid on the agreed-upon schedule. Certain Subcontractors subsequently stopped performing on their contracts with Hollister.

Accordingly, certain Project Owners ceased making remittance or progress payments to the Debtor on Projects that were pending or completed, but not yet paid in full. As Project Owner payments are the Debtor’s sole source of operating revenue, non-payment led to the Company experiencing significant operational cash flow and liquidity issues.

That’s brutal to read. This is what they call, “over your skis.” 45 projects are in various stages of completion.

The bankruptcy filing is predicated upon triggering the automatic stay, initiating a “breathing spell,” and giving the company an opportunity to negotiate with the Project Owners, the subcontractors, property owners and insurers on how to proceed.

  • Jurisdiction: D. of New Jersey (Judge Kaplan)

  • Capital Structure: $14mm line of credit (funded, PNC Bank NA), $1.3mm Term Loan (funded, PNC Bank NA)

  • Professionals:

    • Legal: Lowenstein Sandler LLP (Brian Buechler, Kenneth Rosen, Joseph DiPasquale, Jennifer Kimble, Arielle Adler)

    • Financial Advisor/CRO: 10X CEO Coaching LLC (Paul Belair)

    • Business Consultant: The Parkland Group Inc. (Larry Goddard)

    • Claims Agent: Prime Clerk LLC (*click on the link above for free docket access)

  • Other Parties in Interest:

    • PNC Bank NA

      • Legal: Duane Morris LLP (James Holman, Sommer Ross)

9/13/19 #55

🔫New Chapter 11 Filing - Sportco Holdings Inc. (United Sporting Companies Inc.)🔫

SportCo Holdings Inc. (United Sporting Companies Inc.)

June 10, 2019

Callback to four previous PETITION pieces:

The first one — which was a tongue-in-cheek mock First Day Declaration we wrote in advance of Remington Outdoor Company’s chapter 11 bankruptcy — is, if we do say so ourselves, AN ABSOLUTE MUST READ. The same basic narrative could apply to the recent chapter 11 bankruptcy filing of Sportco Holdings Inc., a marketer and distributor of products and accessories for hunting, which filed for bankruptcy on Monday, June 10, 2019. Sportco’s customer base consists of 20k independent retailers covering all 50 states. But back to the “MUST READ.” There are some choice bits there:

Murica!! F*#& Yeah!! 

Remington (f/k/a Freedom Group) is "Freedom Built, American Made." Because nothing says freedom like blowing sh*t up. Cue Lynyrd Skynyrd's "Free Bird." Hell, we may even sing it in court now that Toys R Ushas made that a thing. 

Our company traces its current travails to 2007 when Cerberus Capital Management LP bought Remington for $370mm (cash + assumption of debt) and immediately "loaded" the North Carolina-based company with even more debt. As of today, the company has $950mm of said debt on its balance sheet, including a $150mm asset-backed loan due June '19, a $550mm term loan B due April '19, and 7.875% $250mm 3rd lien notes due '20. Suffice it to say, the capital structure is pretty "jammed." Nothing says America like guns...and leverage

Indeed, this is true of Sportco too. Sportco “sports” $23mm in prepetition ABL obligations and $249.8mm in the form of a term loan. Not too shabby on the debt side, you gun nuts!

More from our mock-up on Remington:

Shortly after Cerberus purchased the company, Barack Obama became president - a fact, on its own, that many perceived as a real "blowback" to gun ownership. Little did they know. But, then, compounding matters, the Sandy Hook incident occurred and it featured Remington's Bushmaster AR-15-style rifle. Subsequently, speeches were made. Tears were shed. Big pension fund investors like CSTRS got skittish AF. And Cerberus pseudo-committed to selling the company. Many thought that this situation was going to spark "change [you] can believe in," lead to more regulation, and curtail gun sales/ownership. But everyone thought wrong. Tears are no match for lobby dollars. Suckers. 

Instead, firearm background checks have risen for at least a decade - a bullish indication for gun sales. In a sick twist of only-in-America fate, Obama's caustic tone towards gunmakers actually helped sell guns. And that is precisely what Remington needed in order to justify its burdensome capital structure and corresponding interest expense. With Hillary Clinton set to win the the election in 2016, Cerberus' convenient inability to sell was set to pay off. 

But then that "dum dum" "ramrod" Donald Trump was elected and he enthusiastically and publicly declared that he would "never, ever infringe on the right of the people to keep and bear arms."  While that's a great policy as far as we, here, at Remington are concerned, we'd rather him say that to us in private and declare in public that he's going to go door-to-door to confiscate your guns. Boom! Sales through the roof! And money money money money for the PE overlords! Who cares if you can't go see a concert in Las Vegas without fearing for your lives. Yield baby. Daddy needs a new house in Emerald Isle. 

Wait? "How would President Trump say he's going to confiscate guns and nevertheless maintain his base?" you ask. Given that he can basically say ANYTHING and maintain his base, we're not too worried about it. #MAGA!! Plus, wink wink nod nod, North Carolina. We'd all have a "barrel" of laughs over that.  

So now what? Well, "shoot." We could "burst mode" this thing, and liquidate it but what's the fun in that. After all, we still made net revenue of $603.4mm and have gross profit margins of 20.9%. Yeah, sure, those numbers are both down from $865.1mm and 27.4%, respectively, but, heck, all it'll take is a midterm election to reverse those trends baby. 

That was a pretty stellar $260mm revenue decline for Remington. Thanks Trump!! So, how did Sportco fare?

Trump seems to be failing to make America great again for those who sell guns.

But don’t take our word for it. Per Sportco:

In the lead up to the 2016 presidential election, the Debtors anticipated an uptick in firearms sales historically attributable to the election of a Democratic presidential nominee. The Debtors increased their inventory to account for anticipated sales increases. In the aftermath of the unexpected Republican victory, the Debtors realized lower than expected sales figures for the 2017 and 2018 fiscal years, with higher than expected carrying costs due to the Debtors’ increased inventory. These factors contributed to the Debtors tightening liquidity and an industry-wide glut of inventory.

Whoops. Shows them for betting against the stable genius. What are these carrying costs they refer to? No gun sales = too much inventory = storage. Long warehousemen.

Compounding matters, the company’s excess inventory butted with industry-wide excess inventory sparked by “the financial distress of certain market participants.” This pressured margins further as Sportco had to discount product to push sales. This “further eroded…slim margins and contributed to…tightening liquidity.” Per the company:

Many of the Debtors’ vendors and manufacturers suffered heavy losses as a result of the Cabela’s-Bass Pro Shop merger, Dick’s Sporting Good’s pull back from the market, and the recent Gander Mountain and AcuSport bankruptcies. Those losses adversely impacted the terms and conditions on which such vendors and manufacturers were willing to extend credit to the Debtors. With respect to the Gander Mountain and AcuSport bankruptcies, the dumping of excess product into the marketplace pushed prices—and margins— even lower. The resulting tightening of credit terms eroded the Debtors’ sales and further contributed to the Debtors’ tightening liquidity.

The company also blames some usual suspects for its chapter 11 filing. First, weather. Weather ALWAYS gets a bad rap. And, of course, the debt.

Riiiiiight. About that debt. When we previously asked “Who is Financing Guns?,” the answer, in the case of Remington, was Bank of America Inc. ($BAC)Wells Fargo Inc. ($WFC) and Regions Bank Inc. ($RF). Likewise here. Those same three institutions make up the company’s ABL lender roster. We’re old enough to remember when banks paid lip service to wanting to do something about guns.

One other issue was the company’s inability to…wait for it…REALIZE CERTAIN SUPPLY CHAIN SYNERGIES after acquiring certain assets from once-bankrupt competitor AcuSport Corporation. Per the company:

The lower than anticipated increase in customer base following the AcuSport Transaction magnified the adverse effects of the market factors discussed above and resulted in a faster than expected tightening of the Debtors’ liquidity and overall deterioration of the Debtors’ financial condition.

The company then ran into issues with its pre-petition lenders and its vendors and the squeeze was on. Recognizing that time was wearing thin, the company hired Houlihan Lokey Inc. ($HLI) to market the assets. No compelling offers came, however, and the company determined that a chapter 11 filing “to pursue an orderly liquidation…was in the best interest of all stakeholders.

R.I.P. Sportco.

*****

But not before you get in one last fight.

The glorious thing about first day papers is that they provide debtors with the opportunity to set the tone in the case. The First Day Declaration, in particular, is a narrative. A narrative told to the judge and other parties-in-interest about what was, what is, and what may be. That narrative often explains why certain other requests for relief are necessary: that is, that without them, there will be immediate and irreparable harm to the estate. The biggest one of these is typically a request for authority to tap a committed DIP credit facility and/or cash collateral to fund operations. On the flip side of that request, however, are the company’s lenders. And they often have something to say about that — objections over, say, the use of cash collateral are common.

But you don’t often see an objector re-write the entire frikken narrative and file it prior to the first hearing in the case.

Shortly after the bankruptcy filing, Prospect Capital Corporation (“PCC”), as the second lien term loan agent, unleashed an objection all over the debtors. Per PCC:

Just a few years ago, the Debtors were the largest distributor of firearms in the United States, with reported annual revenue of in excess of $770 million. Contrary to the First Day Declaration filed in these cases, the Debtors’ demise was not due to outside forces such as the “2016 presidential election,” “disruptions in the industry” and “natural disasters. Rather, as a result of dividend recapitalization transactions in 2012 and 2013, the Debtors’ equity owner, Wellspring Capital, “cashed out” in excess of $183 million. After lining their pockets with over $183 million, fiduciaries appointed by Wellspring Capital to be directors and officers of the Debtors grossly mismanaged the business and depleted all reserves necessary to weather the storms and the headwinds the business would face. In a short time, the business went from being the largest firearms distributor in the United States to being liquidated. As a result of years of mismanagement and the failure of the estates’ fiduciaries to preserve value, the Second Lien Lenders will, in all likelihood, recover only a small fraction of their $249.7 million secured loan claim. Years of mismanagement ultimately placed the Debtors in the position where they are in now….

https___bucketeer-e05bbc84-baa3-437e-9518-adb32be77984.s3.amazonaws.com_public_images_1a85b8e2-c526-4e44-8bcb-0bfb63c7ccba_500x281 (1).gif

This sh*t just got much more interesting: y’all know we love dividend recapitalizations. Anyway, PCC went on to object to the fact that this is an in-court liquidation when an out-of-court process would be, in their view, cheaper and just as effective; they also object to the debtors’ proposed budget and use of cash collateral. The upshot is that they see very little chance of recovery of their second lien loan and want to maximize value.

Of course, the debtors be like:

scoreboard.jpeg

The numbers speak for themselves, they replied. They were $X of revenue between 2012 and 2016 and then, after Trump was elected, they’ve been $X-Y%. Plain and simple.

So where does this leave us? After some concessions from the DIP lenders and the debtors, the court approved the debtors requested DIP credit facility on an interim basis. The order preserves PCC’s rights to come back to the court with an argument related to cash collateral after the first lien lenders (read: the banks) are paid off in full (and any intercreditor agreement-imposed limitations on PCC’s ability to fight fall away).

Ultimately, THIS may sum up this situation best:

It’s genuinely difficult to pick the most villainous company in this story. Is it the company selling guns who made a big bet on people’s deepest fears and insecurities and then shit the bed? The private equity company bleeding the gun distributor dry and then running it straight into the ground? Or the other private equity company that is now mad it likely won’t get anything near what it paid out in the original loan to the distributor? Folks...let them fight.

  • Jurisdiction: D. of Delaware (Judge Silverstein)

  • Capital Structure: $23.1mm ABL, $249mm term loan (Prospect Capital, Summit Partners)

  • Professionals:

    • Legal: McDermott Will & Emery LLP (Timothy Walsh, Darren Azman, Riley Orloff) & (local) Polsinelli PC (Christopher Ward, Brenna Dolphin, Lindsey Suprum)

    • Board of Directors: Bradley Johnson, Alexander Carles, Justin Vorwerk

    • Financial Advisor/CRO: Winter Harbor LLC (Dalton Edgecomb)

    • Investment Banker: Houlihan Lokey Inc.

    • Claims Agent: BMC Group (*click on the link above for free docket access)

  • Other Parties in Interest:

    • DIP Agent: Bank of America NA

      • Legal: Winston & Strawn LLP (Daniel McGuire, Gregory Gartland, Carrie Hardman) & (local) Richards Layton & Finger PA (John Knight, Amanda Steele)

    • Agent for Second Lien Lenders: Prospect Capital Corporation

      • Legal: Olshan Frome Wolosky LLP (Adam Friedman, Jonathan Koevary) & (local) Blank Rome LLP (Regina Stango Kelbon, Victoria Guilfoyle, John Lucian)

    • Prepetition ABL Lenders: Bank of America NA, Wells Fargo Bank NA, Regions Bank NA

    • Large equityholders: Wellspring Capital Partners, Summit Partners, Prospect Capital Corporation

    • Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors (Vista Outdoor Sales LLC, Magpul Industries Corporation, American Outdoor Brands Corporation, Garmin USA Inc., Fiocchi of America Inc., FN America LLC, Remington Arms Company LLC)

      • Legal: Lowenstein Sandler LLP (Jeffrey Cohen, Eric Chafetz, Gabriel Olivera) & (local) Morris James LLP (Eric Monzo)

      • Financial Advisor: Emerald Capital Advisors (John Madden)

Update 7/7/19 #115

🚽New Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Filing - Orchids Paper Products Company🚽

Orchids Paper Products Company

April 1, 2019

We first wrote about Orchids Paper Products Company ($TIS) back in November 2018 in “🚽More Trouble in Paper-Ville (Short A$$-Wipes)🚽.” It is a piece worth revisiting because it sums up the situation rather nicely. We wrote:

Orchids Paper Products Company ($TIS) is a Okahoma-based producer of bulk tissue paper which is later converted into finished products like paper towels, toilet paper and paper napkins; it sells its products for use in the “at home” market under private label to dollar stores, discount retailers and grocery stores. Its largest customers include the likes of Dollar General Corp. ($DG)Walmart Inc. ($WMT) and Family Dollar/Dollar Tree, which, combined, account for over 60% of the company’s sales. Given the rise of the dollar stores and discount retailers and the rise in private label generally, you’d think that this company would be killing it. Spoiler alert: it’s not. In fact, it is, by definition, insolvent.

And:

This company doesn’t produce enough toilet paper to wipe away this sh*tfest. See you in bankruptcy court.

And that’s precisely where they (and affiliates) are now — in the District of Delaware.

And the story hasn’t really changed: the debtors still struggle from operational issues related to their facilities, too much competition (causing margin compression and loss of pricing power), rising input costs, and customer defections. To make matters worse, given the debtors’ deteriorating financial position, raw materials suppliers reduced credit terms given the debtors’ public reporting of its troubles. Consequently, virtually all of the debtors’ financial metrics got smoked. Gross profit? Smoked. Cash flow? Smoked. Net income? Smoooooooked.

Speaking of “smooooooked,” the company twice notes its termination of their investment banker, Guggenheim Securities. Bankers get replaced all of the time: not entirely sure why they felt the need to make such an issue of it here. That said, Guggenheim apparently marketed the company for months without finding a prospective buyer that would clear the debt. The company, therefore, hired Houlihan Lokey ($HL) to market the company. The result? They couldn’t find a buyer that would clear the debt. Nothing like paying a new banker AND presumably paying some sort of tail to your old banker just to end up with your pre-petition secured lender as your stalking horse bidder (and DIP lender)! Sheesh.

As we said, “[t]his company doesn’t produce enough toilet paper to wipe away this sh*tfest.”

  • Jurisdiction: (Judge Walrath)

  • Capital Structure: $187.3mm RCF/TL (Ankura Trust Company, L.L.C.), $11.1mm New Market Tax Loan

  • Professionals:

    • Legal: Polsinelli PC (Christopher Ward, Shanti Katona, Jerry Switzer Jr.)

    • Board of Directors: Steven Berlin, John Guttilla, Douglas Hailey, Elaine MacDonald, Mark Ravich, Jeffrey Schoen

    • Financial Advisor: Deloitte Transactions and Business Analytics LLP (Richard Infantino)

    • Investment Banker: Houlihan Lokey Capital Inc.

    • Claims Agent: Prime Clerk LLC (*click on the link above for free docket access)

  • Other Parties in Interest:

    • Large Equityholder: BML Investment Partners LP

    • Prepetition RCF Admin Agent: Ankura Trust Company

    • DIP Admin Agent: Black Diamond Commercial Finance LLC

    • DIP Lender: Orchids Investment LLC

      • Legal: Winston & Strawn LLP (Daniel McGuire) & (local) Fox Rothschild LLP (Seth Niederman)

    • Stalking Horse Bidder

      • Legal: Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP (Kimberly Debeers, Ron Meisler)

    • Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors

      • Legal: Lowenstein Sandler LLP (Mary Seymour) & CKR Law (David Banker)

Updated 5/18

New Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Filing - Aceto Corporation

Aceto Corporation

February 19, 2019

In November in “🎬🎥Moviepass Falters; Market Chuckles🎬🎥,” we highlighted how Aceto Corporation ($ACET) had announced that it was pursuing strategic alternatives on the heels of obtaining a waiver of covenant non-compliance. It appears that its pursuit was (somewhat) fruitful.

Yesterday the company filed for bankruptcy in the District of New Jersey with intent to sell its chemicals business assets to New Mountain Capital for $338mm in cash, plus the assumption of certain liabilities (subject to adjustments). It also intends to sell another subsidiary, Rising Pharmaceuticals, while in bankruptcy and prior to the end of its fiscal year on June 30, 2019.

The company’s pre-petition capital structure consists of:

  • an $85mm 9.5%-11.5% secured revolving loan (Wells Fargo Bank NA);

  • a $120mm 11.5% secured term loan (as part of the same A/R Credit Agreement as the above); and

  • $143.75mm of 2% convertible senior notes due 2020 (Citibank NA).

Carry the one, add the two: that’s a total of $348.75mm of debt. Which means that the purchase price of the chemicals business doesn’t even cover the company’s debt. Here’s to hoping the Rising Pharmaceuticals business fetches a good price. To be fair, the company did end its fiscal 2018 with $103.9mm of cash.

Pre-petition lenders led by pre-petition agent, Wells Fargo Bank NA, have committed to providing the company with a $60mm DIP credit facility.

  • Jurisdiction: D. of New Jersey (Judge )

  • Capital Structure: see above.

  • Professionals:

    • Legal: Lowenstein Sandler LLP (Kenneth Rosen, Michael Etkin, Paul Kizel, Jeffrey Cohen, Philip Gross)

    • Financial Advisor/CFO: AlixPartners LLP (Rebecca Roof)

    • Investment Banker: PJT Partners LP

    • Claims Agent: Prime Clerk LLC (*click on the link above for free docket access)

  • Other Parties in Interest:

    • DIP Agent and Pre-petition Agent: Wells Fargo Bank NA

      • Legal: McGuireWoods LLP (Kenneth Noble)

📽New Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Filing - Frank Theatres Bayonne/South Cove LLC📽

Frank Theatres Bayonne/South Cove LLC

Just in time for a sh*tty holiday movie season with subpar fare like “Vice” and “Aquaman” hitting theaters, Frank Theatres Bayonne/South Cove LLC and 23 affiliated companies filed for bankruptcy in the District of New Jersey. Under brand names Frank Theatres, CineBowl & Grille and Revolutions, the company owns and operates 9 pure play movie theaters, 3 family entertainment complexes (i.e., bowling, arcade, etc.), and 3 combination — movie theater AND family entertainment — locations. Despite a robust year for Hollywood on the heals of highly successful-cum-intellectually-retarding movies like Avengers:Infinity War and Venom, the company’s revenues and resultant losses over the past three years paint a clear picture as to why this company is in bankruptcy court. From 2016 through 2018, revenues have declined from approximately $65mm to $56mm to $40mm, respectively. Losses, in turn, come in at $10.2mm, $11.3mm and $9.7mm. These are brutal numbers.

Of course, part of the issue here is that, in certain cases, this chain knew nothing of first run screenings of the aforementioned hits. Per the company, the expansion beyond the core theater business into the broader entertainment space proved disastrous, marked by poor locations, unprofitable leases, cost overruns, delayed openings, and ineffective management. Consequently, the company started deploying theater revenue like an ATM to service the flailing entertainment business. Except, there was one giant problem with all of this:

While operating cash and third-party loans were being used to support the liquidity need caused by the over-budget, past-deadline, and unprofitable new locations, the remainder of the existing locations also steadily declined in general admissions and total revenues as preventative maintenance, standard course refreshes, and local marketing initiatives were reduced or abandoned altogether. In addition, landlords and critical vendors were not paid or were materially aged beyond their standard payment terms. These poor management decisions were made in most cases without the knowledge or consent of the Debtors’ capital providers.

Whoops.

In some instances, the Company was evicted, locked out of its theater locations, and/or box office studios refused to allow the theaters to exhibit key first run movies which further exacerbated the decline in financial performance.

Like we said: they knew nothing of first run screenings. Not that you’d want to see them at these theaters anyway:

Under Debtors’ prior management (pre-September 2017), the physical state of many locations was severely neglected. Much needed capital improvements were not made into maintenance or upgrades of many locations. As a result, over time, the locations became dirty and in disrepair, which ultimately deterred business and resulted in a decrease in revenue.

Now if that doesn’t sound like an oh-so-lovely-holiday-moviegoing experience we don’t know what does. Usually a rabies shot isn’t a prerequisite to seeing a new flick.

Given all of this (and alleged mismanagement which is now the subject of ongoing litigation), the company was ill-suited to compete (deep voice) in a world where the industry shifted to the “premium” movie-going experience. After all, why go to the movies at all if you can just sit at home and watch Sandra Bullock evade zombies on Netflix. The only reason is, thanks to 4DX and the like, to feel that punch to the face from Dwayne Johnson or the wind in your hair when Tom Cruise races down the streets of London on a motorcycle. Except, this company didn’t have any of that new razzle dazzle. They did have the prices though:

While the condition of the Company’s locations deteriorated, the movie theater industry in general trended toward an enhanced movie going experience, including luxury recliners and a more “premium” experience. At the same time, the Debtors’ ticket and concession prices continued to rise in line with, or over, the industry average (which further discouraged customers).

And so now bankruptcy. The company has a restructuring support agreement that includes participation from both its first lien and second lien lenders. The former, Elm Park Capital Management LLC, will have $20mm of their debt reinstated (which may included up to $5mm in DIP financing). The latter, Seacoast Capital Partners III LP, will reinstate $2.5mm to be paid with 25% of net cash proceeds from the sale/monetization of the reorganized assets (once Elm Park has received $20mm on account of their claims). The balance of secured debt will convert into equity. General unsecured creditors are likely to donut.

The company intends to emerge from bankruptcy with only the most profitable locations intact.

  • Jurisdiction: D. of New Jersey (Judge Meisel)

  • Capital Structure: $31mm first lien debt (Elm Park Capital Management LLC), $8mm second lien debt (Seacoast Capital Partners III LP)

  • Company Professionals:

    • Legal: Lowenstein Sandler LLP (Kenneth Rosen, Joseph DiPasquale, Michael Papandrea, Eric Chafetz)

    • Financial Advisor: Moss Adams LLP & Paragon Entertainment Holdings LLC

    • Claims Agent: Prime Clerk LLC

  • Other Parties in Interest:

    • First Lien & DIP Lender: Elm Park Capital Management

      • Legal: Neligan LLP — Patrick Neligan Jr., John Gaither

    • Second Lien Lender: Seacost Capital Partners III LP

      • Legal: Dorsey & Whitney LLP — Larry Makel, Eric Lopez Schnabel

    • Benefit Street Partners LLC

      • Legal: Moore & VanAllen — Alan Pope

New Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Filing - Bakken Resources Inc.

Bakken Resources Inc.

December 7, 2018

Publicly-traded oil and gas company, Bakken Resources Inc. ($BKKN), filed for bankruptcy on Friday in the District of Nevada. The company focuses its activities in the Williston Basin in western North Dakota with a focus on acquiring mineral leases and non-operating oil mineral interests and then leasing their acreage to ten oil drilling operators.

Without getting into the weeds here, it seems pretty clear from the bankruptcy papers that the company required a little more focus on its royalty income payments: it suffers from all kinds of reconciliation issues with its partner operators as well as its “overriding royalty” holder, Holms Energy. It’s also getting sued up the wazoo. So, that’s a bit of a drain. As well as a hindrance to the company in terms of raising capital — $8-10mm of which is desperately needed to acquire new producing mineral rights. The company has no secured debt and less than a million of unsecured debt which begs a super serious question: how the hell did it hire Lowenstein Sandler LLP and AlixPartners LLP? Where’s THAT money coming from?

The company notes:

The commencement of this Chapter 11 Case is the product of a confluence of factors that continue to erode the Company’s liquidity and substantially impede the Company’s ability to raise necessary capital. The Company’s cash position deteriorated significantly in 2018 due to a precipitous drop in oil prices and continued litigation expenses. Since October 2018, oil prices have fallen by 28% which has drastically impacted the Company’s net royalty revenues, as has a decline in production from the Company’s current wells. The Company’s monthly net royalty revenues are projected to decline from $ 142,000 in April 2018 to approximately $ 70,000 in April 2019. This decline combined with legal expenses of approximately $ 2,300,000 to date in 2018 has forced the Company to consume more than $ 2 million in cash this year. The Company projects that it will exhaust an additional $ 1.3 million through June 2019 absent a bankruptcy filing.

Remember: the President of the United States WANTS low oil prices. But we digress.

AlixPartners is charged with selling the company as a going concern, raising capital, or selling discrete assets or operations. Which, we’d be remiss not to note, isn’t Alix’s typical kind of retention. We just hope they disclosed any and all potential conflicts.

  • Jurisdiction: D. of Nevada (Judge Beesley)   

  • Company Professionals:

    • Legal: Lowenstein Sandler LLP (Jeffrey Cohen, Gabriel Olivera) & (local) Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck LLP (Samuel Schwartz, Connor Shea)

    • Financial Advisor: AlixPartners LLP (Richard Robbins)

    • Claims Agent: Omni Management (*click on company name above for free docket access)

New Chapter 11 Filing - Duro Dyne National Corp.

9/7/18

Duro Dyne National Corp., a manufacturer of sheet metal accessories and equipment for the heating, ventilating and air conditioning industry has filed for bankruptcy in the District of New Jersey. It constitutes one of those rare instances where an otherwise healthy business requires bankruptcy protection to ward off potential liability. 

The company reported steadily increasing sales and profits as steel prices fell to historic lows and construction activity continued to rebound from the recession. In 2017, the company had $69mm in sales and $5.2mm in EBITDA. In 2018, steel prices have increased -- in part due to tariffs -- and so the Company also raised prices. It expects $73.6mm of sales and $5.2mm of EBITDA. So what's the issue here? 

Per the company:

Beginning in the mid to late 1980s, the Company was sued on account of Asbestos Personal Injury Claims in various jurisdictions alleging liability for bodily injury allegedly sustained as a result of exposure to products containing asbestos allegedly manufactured and/or distributed by the Company from the 1950s through the 1970s.

Consequently, due to the increasing costs of defending and resolving the asbestos personal injury claims and the decline of insurance proceeds covering them, the company filed for bankruptcy to establish a plan that institutes a "channeling" injunction that directs all present and future asbestos-related demands to a funded trust for handling and payment. 

  • Jurisdiction: D. of New Jersey (Judge Kaplan)
  • Capital Structure: $1.29mm funded secured debt     
  • Company Professionals:
    • Legal: Lowenstein Sandler LLP (Kenneth Rosen, Jeffrey Prol)
    • Financial Advisor: Getzler Henrich & Associates LLC
    • Claims Agent: BMC Group Inc. (*click on company name above for free docket access)
  • Other Parties in Interest:
    • Exit Lender: Bank of America NA
    • Ad Hoc Asbestos Claimants Committee
      • Legal: Caplin & Drysdale Chartered (James Wehner, Jeffrey Liesemer)
    • Prepetition Future Claimants Representative
      • Legal: Young Conaway Stargatt & Taylor LLP (Edwin Harron, Sara Beth Kohut)

New Chapter 11 Bankruptcy - Cenveo Inc.

Cenveo Inc.

  • 2/2/18 Recap: Publicly-traded ($CVO) large envelope and label manufacturer with roots tracing back 100 years filed for bankruptcy. Interestingly, you, our treasured PETITION readers, probably interact with Cenveo's products in your day-to-day life. Cenveo prints comic books you can buy at the bookstore, produces specialized envelopes used by JPMorgan Chase Bank ($JPM) and American Express ($AMEX) to deliver credit card statements, and manufactures point of sale roll receipts used in cash registers and prescription labels found on medication at national pharmacies. Why did it file for bankruptcy? Disruption. And debt. The company notes that its filing was necessary to tame its burdensome funded debt and corresponding annual $99.4mm debt payments (inclusive of cash and "principle" payments). In light of its leverage, the company apparently also suffered from other pressures on the business, including restrictive trade terms and/or the departure of business from vendors. But, wait! There's more. And its textbook disruption. Per the company, "In addition to Cenveo’s leverage issues, macroeconomic factors, including the introduction of new e-commerce, digital substitution for products, and other technologies, are transforming the industry. Consumers increasingly use the internet and other electronic media to purchase goods and services, pay bills, and obtain electronic versions of printed materials. Moreover, advertisers increasingly use the internet and other electronic media for targeted campaigns directed at specific consumer segments rather than mail campaigns." Ouch. To put it simply, every single time you opt-in for an electronic bank statement, you're f*cking over Cenveo. More from the company, "As society has become increasingly dependent on digital technology products such as laptops, smartphones, and tablet computers, spending on advertising and magazine circulation has eroded, resulting in an overall decline in the demand for paper products, and in-turn lowering reliance on certain of Cenveo’s print marketing business. In addition, there is generally a decline in supply of paper products in the industry, such that only a handful of paper mills control the majority of the paper supply. As a result, paper mills and other vendors that sell paper products have a large amount of leverage over their customers, including Cenveo. The overall decline in the paper industry combined with the diminished supply in paper products has led to overall decline in the industry, dramatically impacting Cenveo’s revenues." Consequently, the company has spent years trying to streamline operations and cut costs: it is not entirely clear from the company's filing, but this disruption clearly led to the "downsizing [of] its workforce," a reduction in its geographic footprint, and asset dispositions. But, ultimately, earnings couldn't manage the balance sheet. The company engaged its various parties in interest and was able to secure a (shaky?) restructuring support agreement and a commitment of financing in the amount of a $190 million ABL DIP Facility provided by the Prepetition ABL Lenders and a new $100 million DIP Term Facility backstopped by more than a majority of the holders of First Lien Notes. It will need to address its underfunded pensions (approximately $92.9mm). 
  • Jurisdiction: S.D. of New York 
  • Capital Structure: see below.
  • Company Professionals:
    • Legal: Kirkland & Ellis LLP (Jayme Sprayragen, Jonathan Henes, Joshua Sussberg, Michael Slade, Gregory Pesce, Melissa Koss, George Klidonas, Natasha Hwangpo)
    • Financial Advisor: Zolfo Cooper LLC (Eric Koza)
    • Investment Banker: Rothschild Inc. (Neil Augustine, Dan Skolds, Matthew Chou, Philip Engel, Daniel Flanary, Thomas Galluccio, Trip Burke, Farhat Suvhanov)
    • Real Estate Consultants: VanRock Real Estate Consulting LLC
    • Claims Agent: Prime Clerk LLC (*click on company name above for free docket access)
    • New Independent Director: Eugene Davis
  • Other Parties in Interest:
    • Prepetition ABL Agent; $190mm ABL DIP Facility Agent: Bank of America NA
    • $100mm DIP Term Facility Agent: Wilmington Savings Fund Society FSB
    • FILO Notes Trustee/First Lien Notes Trustee/Second Lien Notes Trustee/Unsecured Notes Trustee: Bank of New York Mellon
      • Legal: Riker Danzig Scherer Hyland & Perretti LLP (Joseph Schwartz, Curtis Plaza, Tara Schellhorn)
    • FILO Noteholder: Allianz GI US High Yield Fund
    • First Lien and Second Lien Noteholder: Brigade Capital Management, LP
      • Legal: Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP (Michael Stamer, David Zensky, Stephanie Lindemuth, James Savin, Kevin Eide)
    • Ad Hoc Committee of First Lien Noteholders
      • Legal: Stroock & Stroock & Lavan LLP (Brett Lawrence, Erez Gilad, Matthew Garofalo, Gabriel Sasson)
      • Financial Advisor: Ducera Partners LLC
    • Examiner: Susheel Kirplani
      • Legal: Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan
    • Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors
      • Legal: Lowenstein Sandler LLP (Kenneth Rosen, Mary Seymour, Bruce Buechler, Bruce Nathan)
      • Financial Advisor: FTI Consulting Inc. (Samuel Star)
Source: DIP Motion

Source: DIP Motion

Updated 4/2/18

New Chapter 11 Bankruptcy - B. Lane Inc. (d/b/a Fashion to Figure)

Fashion to Figure (@FTFSnaps)

  • 11/13/17 Recap: Another retailer finds its way to bankruptcy. Here, the New York-based plus-size women's specialty retailer with 26-mall-and-outlet-center-based locations has filed for bankruptcy in New Jersey. The company appears to be suffocating under the weight of its brick and mortar locations but purports to have successful e-commerce and wholesale channels. It intends to pursue a sale of all of its assets "to be consummated as soon as possible given the upcoming critical holiday shopping season commencing on 'Black Friday'...." Wait, huh? The company is filing NOW to get out AHEAD of Black Friday? No wonder this company is bankrupt. Of course, the company is also considering vacating locations and "expeditiously conducting going out of business" sales. To this end, the company has filed a bid procedures motion with a joint venture of liquidators, SB Capital Group LLC and 360 Merchant Solutions LLC, lined up as stalking horse bidder for the assets; it also intends to continue to pursue a sale to "one of the largest department store chains in the United States," which apparently expressed some interest pre-petition. Meanwhile, no background on a bankrupt retailer is complete without some private equity shop getting thrown under the bus. Here, the company states (without overtly identifying the PE fund for whatever reason), "In 2012, prompted by a [$15mm] private equity investment, the Company embarked on a rapid expansion of the business. The expansion, however, proved ill-fated and ill-timed, coming at a time when traditional brick and mortar retail was on the decline. Specifically, the Company over-expanded into the shopping mall retail space at a time when market trends were shifting away from traditional brick and mortar stores and towards online retail." Ah, private equity. Speaking of private equity, a fund affiliated with Perella Weinberg Partners is listed as the primary equityholder with a 20.5% position. Curious. Otherwise, it looks like a slate of "friends and family" type investors got burned here. Speaking of getting burned, the list of top creditors reflects a who's who of landlords that the distressed world has become accustomed to seeing at the top of the "Top 30 Creditors" list: Washington Prime Group Inc. ($WPG)(listed once), Westfield Corp. ($WFD)(twice), Simon Property Group Inc. ($SPG)(six times), and Macerich Co. ($MAC)(listed twice). Nothing to see here.
  • Jurisdiction: D. of New Jersey (Judge Sherwood)
  • Capital Structure: $1.0mm secured debt (ACM Capital Fund I LP), $250k (Cowen Overseas Investment LP)
  • Company Professionals:
    • Legal: Lowenstein Sandler LLP (Kenneth Rosen, Bruce Buechler, Philip Gross, Keara Waldron, Michael Papandrea)
    • Prepetition Investment Banker: Cowen and Company LLC
    • Claims Agent: Prime Clerk LLC (*click on the company name above for free docket access)
    • Other Parties in Interest:
      • ACM Capital Partners LLC
        • Legal: Shraiberg Landua & Page (Bradley Shraiberg)
      • Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors
        • Legal: Hahn & Hessen LLP (Mark Powers, Alison Ladd) & (local) Fox Rothschild LLP (Richard Meth, Paul Labov)
        • Financial Advisor: EisnerAmpner LLP (Edward Phillips)

Updated 5/5/18

New Chapter 11 Filing - M&G USA Corporation

M&G USA Corporation

  • 10/24/17 Recap: Disruption via cliche and foreign competition. Here, the plastics maker and indirect subsidiary of petrochemical giant Mossi Ghisolfi Group filed for bankruptcy. The company had begun construction on a vertically-integrated plant in Corpus Christi Texas back in 2013 but then they ran headfirst into the single-most common construction cliche out there: delays and cost overruns. And that was before Hurricane Harvey compounded matters. The plant remains incomplete and, consequently, the company has "severe liquidity constraints" that it intends to address in bankruptcy - specifically, through a significant deleveraging. The company highlighted several other causes for its state of affairs: (i) higher raw material costs due to supply shortages, (ii) a recent wave of competing low-priced imports that flooded the US market (note: the company has outstanding petitions with the US Department of Commerce and the US International Trade Commission alleging that imports of polyethylene terephthalate resin from Brazil, Indonesia, South Korea, Pakistan and Taiwan are being "dumped" in the US market), and (iii) price-compression due to a competitors GOB sale. The company seeks approval of a $100mm DIP credit facility to fund its cases. 
  • Jurisdiction: D. of Delaware (Judge Shannon)
  • Capital Structure: $1.7b outstanding principal amount of debt (see below)   
  • Company Professionals:
    • Legal: Jones Day (Scott Greenberg, Carl Black, Stacey Corr-Irvine, Michael Cohen, Nicholas Morin, Peter Saba, James Sottile IV, Daniel Merrett, Oliver Zeltner) & (local) Pachulski Stang Ziehl & Jones LLP (Laura Davis Jones, James O'Neill, Joseph Mulvihill)
    • Financial Advisor/CRO: Alvarez & Marsal North America LLC (Dennis Stogstill)
    • Investment Banker: Rothschild Inc. (Neil Augustine)
    • Board of Directors: Alan Carr, Frederick Brace
    • Claims Agent: Prime Clerk LLC (*click on link above for free docket access)
  • Other Parties in Interest:
    • DAK Americas LLC 
      • Legal: Weil Gotshal & Manges LLP (Alfredo Perez, Christopher Lopez) & (local) Morris Nichols Arsht & Tunnell LLP (Curtis Miller)
    • Equity Holders: Magnate S.a r.l.
      • Legal: Kirkland & Ellis LLP
    • DIP Lender: Banco Inbursa S.A., Institucion De Banca Multiple, Grupo Financiero Inbursa
      • Legal: Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP
    • Large Unsecured Creditor: Indorama Ventures Montreal LP
      • Legal: Lowenstein Sandler LLP (Paul Kizel, Nicole Fulfree)
    • Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors:
      • Legal: Milbank Tweed Hadley & McCloy LLP (Dennis Dunne, Abhilash Raval, Lauren Doyle) & (local) Cole Schotz P.C. (J. Kate Stickles, David Hurst)

Updated 11/19/17

Source: First Day Declaration

Source: First Day Declaration

New Chapter 11 Bankruptcy - Appvion Inc.

Appvion Inc.

  • 10/2/17 Recap: The 100+-year old Appleton Wisconsin-based manufacturer of specialty coated paper has filed for bankruptcy. The company operates in two segments, the thermal paper segment and the carbonless paper segment. The thermal paper segment, on the surface, seems like it would be the most susceptible segment to technological disruption. It is used in four principal end markets: 1) point-of-sale for retail receipts and coupons (PETITION Note: you could understand why this would seemingly be in decline with Square and other P.O.S. stations now emailing receipts - not to mention more and more retail being done online); 2) label products for shipping, warehousing, medical and clean-room supplies (PETITION Query: perhaps the shipping labels offsets the paper receipts?); 3) tags and tickets for airline/baggage applications, events and transportation tickets, lottery and gaming applications (PETITION Note: one of us bought a baseball a scannable paperless ticket the other day from Stubhub...hmmm); and 4) printer, calculator and chart paper for engineering, industrial and medical diagnostic charts. The thermal paper segment is 60% of the company's net sales and has enjoyed annual average growth rates between 1-3%. Somewhat shockingly. PETITION Note: We would have liked to have seen those four sub-segments separated out. Meanwhile, the carbonless paper segment accounts for the other 40% of net sales; it produces coated paper products for design and print applications. The paper is used in a variety of end markets including government, retail, financial, insurance and manufacturing. This segment has been in structural decline since 1994, down approximately 7-11% annually due to the rise of new technologies in digital laser, inkjet and thermal printers. Oh, and electronic communications: the company just throws that in their bankruptcy papers like it's an afterthought. In other words, government and corporations are relying more on email than on the printed page which, duh, obviously impacts this segment. The company owns there manufacturing plants and leases three warehouses; it also has 915 union employees - owed $112.6mm in obligations - who probably ought to get ready to get bent (they are represented by the United Steel, Paper and Forestry, Rubber, Manufacturing, Energy, Allied Industrial and Service Workers International Union (the “USW”). The company blames the chapter 11 filing on negative industry trends, an unsustainable degree of balance sheet leverage, inability to adequately address near-term maturities and rapidly deteriorating liquidity. Liquidity became even more of an issue after the company issued a "going concern" warning and received an S&P credit downgrade - two things that obviously made suppliers skittish and resulted in demands for disadvantageous trade terms. Recognizing decreased liquidity, the company appears to have taken as much cost out of the business as it can which, from the looks of the company's papers, may be artificially inflating the numbers on the thermal side in the face of technological innovation. PETITION Note: the assumptions the bankers concoct for this side of the business ought to be watched very carefully. Somewhat surprisingly, despite a full slate of advisors and months of lead-up to the filing, this is a classic free-fall into bankruptcy: there doesn't appear to be any restructuring support agreement with the lenders whatsoever. There is, however, a proposed $325.2mm DIP credit facility which would include $85mm of new money and a $240.2mm rollup of pre-petition money (in other words, the full amount of pre-petition TL & RCF monies outstanding, ex-interest). Nothing like being senior in the cap stack. Final PETITION Note: anyone think this will be the last paper-related bankruptcy in, say, the next 12 months? This is starting to look like 2007 all over again...
  • Jurisdiction: D. of Delaware
  • Capital Structure: $335mm first lien TL & $100 RCF ($240.8mm outstanding included accrued/unpaid interest), $250mm '20 9% second lien senior notes, $24mm A/R securitization, $6mm Industrial Development Bonds, $500k TL with the State of Ohio
  • Company Professionals:
    • Legal: DLA Piper (US) LLP (Richard Chesley, Stuart Brown, Jamila Willis, Kaitlin Edelman)
    • Financial Advisor/CRO: AlixPartners LLP (Alan Holtz, Pilar Tarry, Nathan Kramer)
    • Investment Banker: Guggenheim Securities LLC (Ronen Bojmel)
    • Claims Agent: Prime Clerk LLC (*click on company name above for free docket access)
    • Strategic Communications Consultant: Finsbury LLC
  • Other Parties in Interest:
    • DIP Admin Agent: Wilmington Trust, NA
      • Legal: Covington & Burling LLP (Ronald Hewitt) & (local) Pepper Hamilton LLP (David Fournier)
    • DIP Lenders
      • Legal: O'Melveny & Myers LLP (George Davis, Daniel Shamah, Matthew Kremer, Jennifer Taylor) & (local) Richards Layton & Finger P.A. (Mark Collins, Michael Merchant, Brett Haywood)
    • Prepetition Credit Agreement Admin Agent: Jefferies Finance LLC
      • Legal: Jones Day (Scott Greenberg, Brad Erens) & (local) Pachulski Stang Ziehl & Jones LLP (Laura Davis Jones, Timothy Cairns)
    • Key Bank National Association
      • Legal: Reed Smith LLP (Peter Clark II, Jennifer Knox, Emily Devan)
    • Fifth Third Bank
      • Legal: Vedder Price PC (Michael Eidelman, Michael Edelman) & (local) Potter Anderson & Corroon LLP (Jeremy Ryan, R. Stephen McNeill, D. Ryan Slaugh)
    • Ad Hoc Committee of Holders of the 9% '20 Second Lien Senior Secured Notes (ADK Capital LLC, ALJ Capital Management LLC, Archer Capital Management LP, Armory Advisors LLC, Barings LLC, Mackenzie Investments, MAK Capital One LLC, Nomura Corporate Research and Assset Management, Riva Ridge Master Fund Ltd., Rotation Capital Management LP, Scott's Cove Management LLC)
      • Legal: Stroock Stroock & Lavan LLP (Jayme Goldstein, Samantha Martin) & (local) Young Conaway Stargatt & Taylor LLP (Edmon Morton, Matthew Lunn)
    • Second Lien Senior Secured Notes Indenture Trustee: US Bank NA
      • Legal: Foley & Lardner LLP (Richard Bernard, Derek Wright, Mark Prager)
    • Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors
      • Legal: Lowenstein Sandler LLP (Kenneth Rosen, Jeffrey Prol, Wojciech Jung) & (local) Klehr Harrison Harvey Branzburg LLP (Michael Yurkewicz, Morton Branzburg, Sally Veghte)

Updated 10/26/17

New Chapter 11 Bankruptcy - Vitamin World Inc.

Vitamin World Inc.  

  • 9/11/17 Recap: As previously foreshadowed, the Holbrook NY-based specialty retailer in the vitamins, minerals, herbs, and supplements market with 334 mall and outlet center retail locations filed for bankruptcy to disentangle itself from legacy operational ties to prior owner NBTY Inc. and terminate various leases (52 identified so far; 45 locations have already been shuttered). Some of the locations are within malls owned by REITS, Simon Property Group, General Growth Properties, and Vornado Realty Trust. The company blames the bankruptcy filing on liquidity constraints caused by supply chain and ingredient availability issues, the struggling retail market, above market rents, and underperforming retail stores. Prepetition lender, Wells Fargo Bank NA, is providing credit during the bankruptcy cases. 
  • Jurisdiction: D. of Delaware 
  • Capital Structure: $14.4mm debt (Wells Fargo Bank NA), $9.5mm "Seller Note" (RE Holdings)
  • Company Professionals:
    • Legal: Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP (Paige Barr, Peter Siddiqui, Allison Thompson) & (local) Saul Ewing LLP (Monique DiSabatino, Mark Minuti)
    • Financial Advisor: RAS Management Advisors LLC
    • Real Estate Advisor: RCS Real Estate Advisors
    • Claims Agent: JND Corporate Restructuring (*click on company name above for free docket access)
  • Other Parties in Interest:
  • DIP Lender: Wells Fargo Bank NA
    • Legal: Riemer Braunstein LLP (Donald Rothman) & (local) Ashby & Geddes PA (Gregory Taylor) 
  • Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors (incl. Simon Property Group, General Growth Properties):
    • Legal: Lowenstein Sandler LLP (Jeffrey Cohen, Bruce Buechler, Mary Seymour) & (local) Whiteford Taylor & Preston LLC (Christopher Samis, L. Katherine Good, Kevin Shaw)
    • Financial Advisor: Berkeley Research Group LLC

Updated 9/24/17

New Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Filing - WYNIT Distribution LLC

WYNIT Distribution LLC

  • 9/8/17 Recap: Minnesota-based technology wholesaler filed for bankruptcy to pursue a sale process. The company seeks approval of a $15mm DIP credit facility to finance the cases. Major customers include Best Buy, Amazon, Costco, Walmart and Target. Fitbit and Symantec are listed among the companies largest creditors. 
  • Jurisdiction: D. of Minnesota
  • Capital Structure: $76.7mm RCF (Wells Fargo)    
  • Company Professionals:
    • Legal: Stinson Leonard Street LLP (Robert Kugler, Edwin Caldie, Phillip Ashfield, Andrew Glasnovich)
    • Financial Advisor: Conway MacKenzie Inc. (Peter A. Richichi)
    • Claims Agent: JND Corporate Restructuring (click on the case name above for free docket access)
  • Other Parties in Interest:
    • Prepetition Lender/DIP Lender: Wells Fargo
      • Legal: Greenberg Traurig LLP (David Kurzweil, John Dyer, DeWitt Perkins) & (local) Lindquist & Vennum LLP (Charles Perkins)
    • Prepetition Creditor: Fitbit Inc.
      • Legal: Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP (Arik Preiss, Deborah Newman, Kevin Zuzolo) & (local) Maslon LLP (Clark Whitmore, Jason Reed)
    • Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors
      • Legal: Lowenstein Sandler LLP (Jeffrey Cohen) & (local) Barnes & Thornburg LLP (Connie Lahn)

Updated 9/21/17

New Chapter 11 Filing - CST Industries Holdings Inc.

CST Industries Holdings Inc.

  • 6/9/17 Recap: So this is a soap opera. Kansas City-based manufacturer of (i) industrial containers used to store architectural and agricultural products, water, dry bulk and oil and gas and (ii) domes, filed for bankruptcy due to its unsustainable capital structure and seemingly strained relationship with its senior subordinated noteholders. According to the company's first day declaration, the company sought a prepetition sale that would pay off its BNP Paribas' loan and make a "substantial payout" to its unsecured creditors. But one obstreperous unsecured creditor rejected the sale overtures and demanded that the company pay to hire advisors "that in turn charged CST substantial fees and expenses" to the tune of $8-10mm (inclusive of its own pros fees). Welcome to the party pal. These fees, coupled with downturns in the oil and gas and Middle Eastern water markets, led to a precipitous drop in EBITDA and a liquidity crisis. Now the company hopes to use Chapter 11 to sell itself (pursuant to a $15mm DIP credit facility).
  • Jurisdiction: D. of Delaware
  • Capital Structure: $57.5mm TL (funded, BNP Paribas), $114.3mm senior subordinated notes (The Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company & OCM Mezzanine Fund II LP).     
  • Company Professionals:
    • Legal: Hughes Hubbard & Reed LLP (Kathryn Coleman, Christopher Gartman, Jacob Gartman, Anson Frelinghuysen) & Potter Anderson & Corroon LLP (Jeremy Ryan, R. Stephen McNeill, D. Ryan Slaugh)
    • Financial Advisor/Investment Banker: CDG Group LLC (Robert Del Genio)
    • Claims Agent: Epiq Bankruptcy Solutions LLC (*click on company name above for free docket access)
  • Other Parties in Interest:
    • TL Agent: BNP Paribas
      • Legal: Chadbourne & Parke LLP (Howard Beltzer, James Copeland, Joseph Giannini) & Norton Rose Fulbright US LLP (Louis Strubeck Jr.) & (local) Young Conaway Stargatt & Taylor LLP (Kara Hammond Coyle)
    • Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors
      • Legal: Lowenstein Sandler LLP (Jeffrey Prol, David Banker, Wojciech Jung, Bruce Nathan) & (local) Shaw Fishman Glantz & Towbin LLC (Thomas Horan, Ira Bodenstein, Christina Sanfelippo)
      • Financial Advisor: Teneo Restructuring and Teneo Capital LLC (Christopher Wu)
    • OCM Mezzanine Fund II, L.P.
      • Legal: Goldberg Kohn Ltd. (William Meyers)
    • Private Equity Sponsor: The Sterling Group

Updated 7/11/17

New Chapter 11 Filing - Mountain Creek Resort

Mountain Creek Resort

  • 5/15/17 Recap: This gives whole new meaning to the term "ski bums." Owner and operator of four-season resort (including a water park and a ski resort) filed for bankruptcy after suffering through (i) seasons of warm winters, (ii) a downturn in the residential real estate market locally, and (iii) a poor litigation outcome that put the business on the hook for millions. The company has lined up $6mm in DIP financing to fund its case. Meanwhile, folks living in the Township of Vernon, New Jersey, can sh*t bricks (see comments within) and try and figure out what the hell happens now that the $27mm owed to the Sussex County Municipal Utilities Authority is in danger of not being paid. See, the prior owner of the resort entered into various agreements with the Township for the construction of sewer capacity to support the Resort. The Township issued bonds to finance the costs of construction and the resort is apparently contractually obligated to reimburse the Township for costs associated with the issuance (naturally, the geniuses in the government didn't bother with a security interest (other than a paltry/limited LOC) and, even if they did, they'd probably be SOL anyway given M&T Bank's senior status in the capital structure). 
  • Jurisdiction: D. of New Jersey
  • Capital Structure: $22.7mm senior debt (M&T Bank), $7mm junior debt (HSK-MC LLC) & various promissory notes    
  • Company Professionals:
    • Legal: Lowenstein & Sandler LLP (Kenneth Rosen, Jeffrey Prol, Nicole Fulfree, Michael Papandrea)
    • Financial Advisor: Getzler Henrich & Associates LLC (Mark Samson)
    • Investment Banker: Houlihan Lokey Capital (Jeffrey Altman)
    • Claims Agent: Prime Clerk LLC (*click on company name above for free docket access)
  • Other Parties in Interest:
    • M&T Bank
      • Legal: Greenberg Traurig LLP (Diane Vuocolo, Kevin Ray)
    • Township of Vernon
      • Legal: McElroy Deutsch Mulvaney & Carpenter LLP (Eric Perkins, Louis Modugno)
    • Prepetition Lender & DIP Lender: HSK Adventures Inc.
      • Legal: Tarter Krinsky & Drogin LLP (Rocco Caveliere, Scott Markowitz, Alex Spizz, Arthur Goldstein)
    • Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors
      • Legal: Trenk DiPasquale Della Fera & Sodono PC (Joseph DiPasquale, Adam Wolper, Robert Roglieri)

Updated 7/12/17

New Chapter 11 Filing - Unilife Corporation

Unilife Corporation

  • 4/12/17 Recap: Publicly-traded ($UNIS) manufacturer and B2B supplier of injectable drug delivery systems (including wearables) to pharmaceutical and biotechnology customers filed for bankruptcy to attempt a 363 sale of the business. This is kind of like a bad episode of Shark Tank. The Company appears to manufacture pretty innovative drug delivery systems - innovative in that the devices seem to be unobtrusive and, if we understand this correctly, help patients receive treatments without the need for multiple needles. But this is one of those episodes where the Sharks start asking about the numbers and they ain't pretty: the company is post-revenue and has some patents but it is pre-FDA approvals and pre-delivery (of medicine) to end users. Its limited revenue source is through negotiated supply agreements. It has a lot of debt (see below) and an expensive facility lease. It also had - in a very Kevin O'Leary-like fashion - a royalty agreement with its senior secured lender (ROS) which entitled ROS to a 4.52% royalty on the first $50mm of net sales (with ratchets for higher sales). So sharky. Of course, this isn't really that relevant when your incurred net losses are $100.8mm like they were in '16 (but we really enjoyed playing with the analogy). Now, ROS is providing a $7.5mm DIP credit facility to fund the cases for 90 days so that the company can attempt to find a buyer (note: there is no stalking horse bidder). Reminder: this was a PUBLICLY-TRADED company so, surely, there are some angry shareholders somewhere. 
  • Jurisdiction: D. of Delaware
  • Capital Structure: $70mm secured term loan (ROS Acquisition Offshore LP), $45.7mm senior secured convertible note (Amgen Inc.), $12.1mm mortgage (First National Bank), $1.9mm financing authority loan (Keystone Redevelopment Group LLC/Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Financing Authority)     
  • Company Professionals:
    • Legal: Cozen O'Connor (Mark Felger, Keith Kleinman, Eric Scherling, Frederick Schmidt) 
    • Financial Advisor: Protiviti Inc. (Guy Davis)
    • Investment Banker: SSG Capital Advisors LLC (J. Scott Victor)
    • Claims Agent: Rust Consulting/Omni Bankruptcy (*click on company name above for free docket access)
  • Other Parties in Interest:
    • DIP Lender: ROS Acquisition Offshore LP
      • Legal: Pachulski Stang Ziehl & Jones LLP (Laura Davis Jones, Jeffrey Davidson, Henry Kevane, Debra Grassgreen)
    • Senior Secured Convertible Noteholder: Amgen Inc.
      • Legal: Ropes & Gray LLP (James Wilton, Patricia Chen) & (local) Cole Schotz PC (Norman Pernick, Katharina Earle)
    • Large General Unsecured Creditor: Sanofi Winthrop Industrie
      • Legal: DLA Piper (US) LLP (Stuart Brown, Kaitlin Edelman)
    • Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors
      • Legal: Lowenstein Sandler LLP (Michael Etkin, David Banker, Barry Bazian, Gerald Bender) & (local) Schnader Harrison Segal & Lewis LLP (Richard Barkasy)

Updated 7/17/17

New Chapter 11 Filing - Rupari Holding Corp.

Rupari Holding Corp.

  • 4/11/17 Recap: Private-equity owned Illinois-based manufacturer of pre-cooked and sauced pork ribs and other barbeque products under the Roma Products brand (sounds gnarley) filed for bankruptcy to effectuate a sale pursuant to Bankruptcy Code section 363 to Carl Buddig & Co. for $26 million. Love this bit: "Rupari began to encounter substantial headwinds shortly after WPP Group's investment in the business." NICE. Looks like the Wind Point Partners guys really earned that 2-and-20 with this beauty. But wait! There's more! We have the Chinese and a freaky-AF diarrhea virus to blame for the business difficulties as well. And, finally, "specific issues unrelated to its everyday operations exacerbated Rupari's challenges," - namely, a $1.2mm judgment against the company in favor of Danish Crown. This abstract description really lets the imagination run wild - we were having flashbacks to "Brick Top" from Snatch - but it was only this. Anticlimactic. 
  • Jurisdiction: D. of Delaware
  • Capital Structure: $67mm first lien secured debt ($23.3mm funded - Antares Capital LP), $34.9mm second lien secured debt (Wind Point Partners), $95.4mm unsecured mezzanine debt 
  • Company Professionals:
    • Legal: DLA Piper (US) LLP (Richard Chesley, John Lyons, R. Craig Martin, Maris Kandestin)
    • Investment Banker: Kinetic Advisors (Sudhin Roy)
    • Claims Agent: Donlin Recano & Co. Inc. (*click on company name above for free docket access)
  • Other Parties in Interest:
    • Antares Capital LP
      • Legal: Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP (John Sieger, Paul Musser) & (local) Potter Anderson & Corroon LLP (Jeremy Ryan, R. Stephen McNeill)
    • Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors
      • Legal: Lowenstein Sandler LLP (Bruce Nathan, Jeffrey Cohen, Wojciech Jung, MIchael Papandrea, Keara Waldron) & (local) Whiteford Taylor & Preston LLP (Christopher Samis, L. Katherine Good, Aaron Stulman)
      • Financial Advisor: CohnReznick LLP (Kevin Clancy, Jeff Manning, Roberta Probber, Mitchell Insero)

Updated 7/18/17

No, not creepy at all. 

No, not creepy at all. 

New Chapter 11 Filing - Gander Mountain Company

Gander Mountain Company

  • 3/10/17 Recap: Preppers alert! The Minneapolis-based outdoor retailer that specializes in guns guns and more guns has run out of "dry powder" (score!) and finds itself in chapter 11. This comes around the same time that the Cabela's/Bass merger looks to be hanging by a thread. Tough time for outdoor retail. On the brightside, folks who are so scared by the recent election can now get a break on MREs and other survival gear as they go off-grid or to Canada. So, there's that.
  • 5/3/17 Update: The company has sold to Camping World Inc. and, attendant to the sale, entered into an agency agreement with a JV of liquidating firms noted below to handle the assets left out of the sale. 
  • Jurisdiction: D. of Minnesota
  • Capital Structure: $390mm ABL (Wells Fargo Bank NA) & $35mm TL (Pathlight Capital LLC) debt
  • Company Professionals: 
    • Legal: Fredrikson & Byron PA (Ryan Murphy, Clinton Cutler, Cynthia Moyer, James Brand, Sarah Olson, Steven Kinsella)
    • Financial Advisor: Lighthouse Management Group (Timothy Becker, James Bartholomew)
    • Investment Banker: Houlihan Lokey Capital Inc. (Stephen Spencer)
    • Real Estate Advisor: Hilco Real Estate LLC (Ryan Lawlor)
    • Liquidators: Tiger Capital Group LLC (Dan Kane, Michael McGrail), Great American Group LLC (Scott Carpenter, Alan Forman), Gordon Brothers Retail Partners LLC (Mackenzie Shea), Hilco Merchant Resources LLC (Ian Fredricks)
      • Legal for Liquidators: Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz (Scott Charles, Neil Snyder) & Riemer & Braunstein LLP (Steven Fox)
    • Claims Agent: Donlin Recano (*click on the company above for free docket)
  • Other Parties in Interest:
    • Prepetition ABL & DIP Lender: Wells Fargo Bank NA
      • Legal: Choate Hall & Stewart LLP (Sean Monahan, Kevin Simard)
    • Term Loan Agent: Pathlight Capital LLC
      • Legal: Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP (Mark Silva, Julia Frost-Davis, Amelia Joiner)
    • Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors
      • Legal: Lowenstein Sandler LLP (Jeffrey Cohen, Keara Waldron, Barry Bazian) & (local) Barnes & Thornburg LLP (Connie Lahn, Peter Clark, Christopher Knapp, Roger Maldonado)
      • Financial Advisor: FTI Consulting LLC (Steven Simms, Dewey Imhoff, Matt Diaz, Timothy Gaines, Jessica Jedynak, Clement Chiun)
    • Buyer: Camping World Inc.
      • Legal: Latham & Watkins LLP (Zachary Judd, Caroline Reckler, Matthew Warren, Jason Gott)

Updated 5/3/17

New Filing - Xtera Communications Inc.

Xtera Communications Inc.

  • 11/15/16 Recap: Texas-based publicly-traded provider of high-capacity optical transport systems for telecom service providers filed for bankruptcy with intent to sell the company to Neptune Bidco, as DIP Lender and stalking horse bidder (DIP = $7.4mm, Bid = $10mm inclusive of DIP amount).
  • Jurisdiction: D. of Delaware
  • Capital Structure: $8.2mm debt (Square 1 Bank), $10mm TL-A & $2mm TL-B (Horizon Technology Finance Corporation)     
  • Company Professionals:
    • Legal: DLA Piper LLP (Thomas Califano, Jamila Willis, Stuart Brown, Maris Kandestin)
    • Investment Banker: Cowen & Company (Lorie Beers)
    • Claims Agent: Epiq Bankruptcy Solutions LLC (*click on company name for docket)
  • Other Parties in Interest:
    • DIP Lender: HIG European Capital Partners
      • Legal: Allen & Overy LLP (Joseph Badtke-Berkow, Daniel Guyder)
    • Horizon Technology Finance Corporation
      • Legal: K&L Gates LLP (A. Lee Hogewood, Steven Caponi, Charles A. Dale III, Margaret Westbrook)
    • Wilmington Trust
      • Legal: Kaye Scholer LLP (Seth Kleinman, Michael Messersmith, Sarah Gryll) & (local) Morris Nichols (Andrew Roth-Moore, Curtis Miller)
    • Unsecured Creditors Committee
      • Legal: Lowenstein Sandler LLP (David Banker) & (local) Bayard PA (Justin Alberto)
      • Financial Advisor: BDO USA LLP (David Berliner)

Updated 12/1/16.