🏠New Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Filing - Stearns Holdings LLC🏠

Stearns Holdings LLC

July 9, 2019

Hallelujah! Something is going on out in the world aside from the #retailapocalypse and distressed oil and gas. Here, Blackstone Capital Partners-owned Stearns Holdings LLC and six affiliated debtors (the “debtors”) have filed for bankruptcy in the Southern District of New York because of…drumroll please…rising interest rates. That’s right: the FED has claimed a victim. Stephen Moore and Judy Shelton must be smirking their faces off.

The debtors are a private mortgage company in the business of originating residential mortgages; it is the 20th largest mortgage lender in the US, operating in 50 states. We’ll delve more deeply into the business model down below but, for now, suffice it to say that the debtors generate revenue by producing mortgages and then selling them to government-sponsored enterprises such as Ginnie Mae, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. There are a ton of steps that have to happen between origination and sale and, suffice it further to say, that requires a f*ck ton of debt to get done. That said, on a basic level, to originate loans, the debtors require favorable interest rates which, in turn, lower the cost of residential home purchases, and increases market demand and sales activity for homes.

Except, there’s been an itsy bitsy teeny weeny problem. Interest rates have been going up. Per the debtors:

The mortgage origination business is significantly impacted by interest rate trends. In mid-2016, the 10-year Treasury was 1.60%. Following the U.S. presidential election, it rose to a range of 2.30% to 2.45% and maintained that range throughout 2017. The 10-year Treasury rate increased to over 3.0% for most of 2018. The rise in rates during this time period reduced the overall size of the mortgage market, increasing competition and significantly reducing market revenues.

Said another way: mortgage rates are pegged off the 10-year treasury rate and rising rates chilled the housing market. With buyers running for the hills, originators can’t pump supply. Hence, diminished revenues. And diminished revenues are particularly problematic when you have high-interest debt with an impending maturity.

This is where the business model really comes into play. Here’s a diagram illustrating how this all works:

Source: First Day Declaration, PETITION

Source: First Day Declaration, PETITION

The warehouse lenders got nervous when, over the course of 2017/18, mortgage volumes declined while, at the same time, the debtors were obligated to pay down the senior secured notes; they, rightfully, grew concerned that the debtors wouldn’t have the liquidity available to repurchase the originated mortgages within the 30 day window. Consequently, the debtors engaged PIMCO in discussions about the pending maturity of the notes. Over a period of several months, however, those discussions proved unproductive.

The warehouse lenders grew skittish. Per the debtors:

Warehouse lenders began reducing advance rates, increasing required collateral accounts and increasing liquidity covenants, further contracting available working capital necessary to operate the business. Eventually, two of the warehouse lenders advised the Debtors that they were prepared to wind down their respective warehouse facilities unless the Debtors and PIMCO agreed in principle to a deleveraging transaction by June 7, 2019. That did not happen. As a result, one warehouse lender terminated its facility effective June 28, 2019 and a second advised that it will no longer allow new advances effective July 15, 2019. The Debtors feared that these actions would trigger other warehouse lenders to take similar actions, significantly impacting the Debtors’ ability to fund loans and restricting liquidity, thereby jeopardizing the Debtors’ ability to operate their franchise as a going concern.

On the precipice of disaster, the debtors offered the keys to PIMCO in exchange for forgiveness of the debt. PIMCO rebuffed them. Subsequently, Blackstone made PIMCO a cents-on-the-dollar cash-out offer on the basis that the offer would exceed liquidation value of the enterprise and PIMCO again declined. At this point there’s a lot of he said, she said about what was offered and reneged upon to the point that it ought to suffice merely to say that the debtors, Blackstone and PIMCO probably aren’t all sharing a Hamptons house together this summer.

So, where did they end up?

The debtors have filed a plan of reorganization with Blackstone as plan sponsor. Blackstone agreed to inject $60mm of new equity into the business — all of which, notably, is earmarked to cash out the notes in their entirety (clearly at at discount — read: below par — for PIMCO and the other noteholders). The debtors also propose to subject Blackstone’s offer to a 30-day competitive bidding process, provided that (a) bids are in cash (credit bids will not be allowed) and (b) all obligations to the GSEs and other investors are honored.

To fund the cases the debtors have obtained a commitment from Blackstone for $35mm in DIP financing. They also sourced proposals from warehouse lenders prepetition and have obtained commitments for $1.5b in warehouse financing from Barclays Bank PLC and Nomura Corporate Funding Americas LLC (guaranteed, on a limited basis, by Blackstone). In other words, Blackstone is ALL IN here: with the DIP financing, the limited guarantee and the equity check, they are placing a stake in the ground when it comes to mortgage origination.

  • Jurisdiction: S.D. of New York (Judge Chapman)

  • Capital Structure: $184mm 9.375% ‘20 senior secured notes (Wilmington Trust Association NA)

  • Professionals:

    • Legal: Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP (Jay Goffman, Mark McDermott, Shana Elberg, Evan Hill, Edward Mahaney-Walter)

    • Financial Advisor: Alvarez & Marsal LLC (Robert Campagna)

    • Investment Banker: PJT Partners LP (Jamie O’Connell)

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

    • Board of Directors: David Schneider, William Cary, Glenn Stearns, Nadim El Gabbani, Chinh Chu, Jason Roswig, Chris Mitchell

  • Other Parties in Interest:

    • Indenture Trustee: Wilmington Trust Association NA

      • Legal: Alston & Bird LLP (Jason Solomon)

    • Major Noteholder: Pacific Investment Management Company LLC

      • Legal: Hogan Lovells US LLP (Bennett Spiegel, Stacey Rosenberg)

    • Blackstone Capital Partners VI-NQ/NF LP

      • Legal: Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP (Elisha Graff, Jamie Fell)

    • Barclays Bank PC

      • Legal: Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP (Peter Partee Sr., Brian Clarke)

    • Nomura Corporate Funding Americas LLC

      • Legal: Milbank LLP (Mark Shinderman, Lauren Doyle) & Alston & Bird LLP (Karen Gelernt)

    • Fannie Mae

      • Legal: O’Melveny & Myers LLP (Stephen Warren)

    • Freddie Mac

      • Legal: McKool Smith PC (Paul Moak)

7/9/19 #30

⚡️New Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Filing - Empire Generating Co LLC⚡️

Empire Generating Co LLC

May 19, 2019

We love when companies that have been circling around the bankruptcy bowl finally get flushed into bankruptcy court. Empire Generating Company is a name that has been kicking around distressed circles for some time now: The Wall Street Journal wrote about it a year ago, back in May 2018. Alas, it now sits within the Southern District of New York. It is the latest in a line of power producers to file for bankruptcy in recent years.

The company owns and operates a (now) dual-fuel power plant in Rensselaer New York; as a merchant power plant, it sells electricity in the wholesale market that ultimately helps power New York’s electrical grid. Very soon, it will likewise be able to generate revenue in New England. In fiscal year 2017, the company generated $91.8mm of revenue and $16.77 of EBITDA. EBITDA decreased to $11.05mm in 2018. The company also has a meaningful amount of debt. As of the petition date, its outstanding owed amounts under its credit facility total $353.4mm. Its $20mm revolver matured in March 2019.

The company cites some interesting causes for its filing. First, it gives an economics 101 lesson, saying that coal and nuclear facilities in New York haven’t been retired quickly enough to limit electricity supply and put upward pressure on prices. Second, it blames progressives (Cuomo!!): New York’s Clean Energy Standard requires that 50% of NY’s electricity come from renewables by 2030, creating yet another supply/demand imbalance that has placed “downward pressure on the price for energy generated by other sources.” Third, unlike retailers who blame bad weather for under performance all of the time, this company actually has a viable excuse: the abnormally cold winter of 2017/2018 increased natural gas prices, compressing the company’s margins. At the time, the company wasn’t yet “dual-fuel” and, therefore, relied exclusively on natural gas whereas competitors could toggle to more economical fuel oil instead. This confluence of factors ultimately led the company to default under its loan docs.

The company has since been in a state of perpetual forbearance with an ad hoc group of pre-petition lenders. It was on the verge of a prepackaged solution to its balance sheet but time ticked away and the company’s pesky lenders traded out of their respective positions. Per the company:

Once the debt trades settled, approximately 55% of the Credit Facility was held by the Consenting Lenders (Black Diamond and MJX), and approximately 34% of the Credit Facility was held by funds managed by Ares Capital (“Ares”).

For the uninitiated, debtors need 2/3 of the amount of a particular tranche of debt to approve a deal for a plan of reorganization to be confirmed by the bankruptcy court. As you can see from the percentages above, Ares Capital and the “Consenting Lenders” (Black Diamond Capital Management LLC & MJX Asset Management LLC) had “blocking positions,” eliminating the possibility of surpassing the required threshold. Months of negotiations ensued and, apparently, Ares and Black Diamond simply couldn’t get along. Uh, yeah, bros: Black Diamond is kinda known for not getting along. Just sayin.

In lieu of an agreement with those parties, the company has secured, pursuant to a restructuring support agreement, a commitment by Black Diamond Capital Management LLC & MJX Asset Management LLC to credit bid — subject to higher and better offers — their debt in exchange for a 100% interest in the reorganized company. The company has, in turn, rejected a proposal from Ares Capital that would confer $37.8mm in cash and 89.75% equity of an acquisition vehicle as consideration for the company’s assets (which it values at a total of $369mm). Why? It concluded that the offer was neither higher nor better than the credit bid; it also had concerns about valuation, approval and feasibility (feasibility!!!!!). Otherwise, the company be like, “PEACE, B*TCHES, WE DON’T WANT NO PART OF THIS INTERCREDITOR DISPUTE.”

And an intercreditor dispute there is! Ares objected right away to the company’s proposed cash collateral, among other things, saying that Black Diamond is steering the company like a meek little sheep. The objection is too lengthy to recant here but, suffice it to say, it looks like we can expect an old school private equity battle over the course of the case. Judge Drain more or less shot down Ares at the hearing, questioning, even, whether they had standing to object; he then went on to amend the proposed cash collateral order.

Absent a settlement between the funds, this will not be the last fight in the case. Pop the popcorn.

  • Jurisdiction: (Judge Drain)

  • Capital Structure: $20mm RCF, $430mm Term B loan, $30mm Term C loan

  • Professionals:

    • Legal: Steinhilber Swanson LLP (Michael Richman) & Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP (Peter Partee Sr., Robert Rich, Michael Legge)

    • Financial Advisor: RPA Advisors (Chip Cummins)

    • Investment Banker:

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

  • Other Parties in Interest:

    • Secured Lenders: Black Diamond Capital Management LLC & MJX Asset Management LLC

      • Legal: Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP (Christine Okike, Albert Hogan III, Carl Tullson)

    • Secured Lender: Ares Capital LP

      • Legal: Kirkland & Ellis LLP (James Sprayragen, Brian Schartz, Anup Sathy, Stephen Hackney, Alexandra Schwarzman)

    • Secured Lender: Starwood

      • Legal: Vinson & Elkins LLP (Steven Abramowitz)

    • Ad Hoc Group

      • Legal: Stroock & Stroock & Lavan LLP

    • Agent: Ankura Trust Company

      • Legal: Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP (Darren Klein)

New Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Filing - New Cotai Holdings LLC

New Cotai Holdings LLC

May 1, 2019

New Cotai Holdings LLC and three affiliated debtors filed for bankruptcy in the Southern District of New York on the basis of New Cotai Ventures LLC, a NY LLC, having cash held in a bank account in White Plains New York (as of when, we wonder). The debtors were formed for the purpose of investing in Studio City International Holdings Limited, have no employees, and are otherwise managed by sponsor, Silver Point Capital LP. The declarant supporting the debtors’ chapter 11 filing is an independent director who was put into place literally 2 days before the filing. Yup, 2 whole days.

Studio City International Holdings Limited is a wretched hive of scum and villany. Sorry, that’s not right. That’s us trying to make this more interesting than it is. In truth, its an “integrated resort comprising entertainment, retail, hotel and gaming facilities” located in Macau (that’s China, people). The project has made it past Phase I of construction but has stalled out there: the rest of the project will require several more years. In October 2018, the company IPO’d 28.75mm American Depository Shares at $12.50/share.

To further capitalize the project, two of the debtors, as co-issuers, issued $380mm of 10.625% PIK Notes in 2013 due May 2019. Curious to know how 10.625% PIK adds up? The current principal balance of the notes is now $856mm.

Now, not to state the obvious, but to paydown Notes on maturity, you kinda need to have some moolah. And considering that the project is only past Phase I with much more work to do…well, you see where we are going here. The company notes:

The Debtors’ ability to satisfy their obligations under the Notes is directly tied to the development and success of the Studio City project. Due to delays in the development of the Studio City project, a reduced allocation of gaming tables from the government, and some unanticipated declines in the Macau gaming market, the Investment has not yet achieved sufficient market value in light of the highly illiquid and unreliable market conditions that have developed following the IPO, making a refinancing impracticable. Therefore, through no fault of their own, the Debtors were unable to satisfy the Notes obligations by their maturity.

Listen guys: you ain’t getting Matt Damon, George Clooney and other whales at your tables if you don’t have VIP tables. Obvi. Second, it sounds like the project hired the quintessential New York City-based general contractor. “Yeah, sure, the project will cost $30mm and take 1 month” only to cost “an additional $300 million” and take literally years. Of course “[c]onstruction costs came in greater than expected.” Isn’t that par for the course in hotel development? The company now has until 2021 to finish Phase II of the project. It sounds like it will need it.

Of course, you have to admire the entrepreneurial enthusiasm:

Notwithstanding the aforementioned challenges, the Debtors believe that the Investment continues to represent a significant economic opportunity—the value of which is not accurately represented in the current market prices of the ADS. Indeed, should the Studio City project continue to develop on its currently anticipated timeframe, the Debtors expect the Investment to generate sufficient value to repay the Notes in full.

The debtors must NOT be expecting a downturn. Gaming usually doesn’t fare too well during one of those. And Chinese growth hasn’t exactly been at levels enjoyed over the last decade or so. But, fingers crossed.

The debtors are negotiating with an Ad Hoc Group of noteholders in an effort to address this state of affairs. They have latitude: Silver Point has committed to a $6.25mm DIP with, among other favorable terms to the debtors, no milestones and a 12-month maturity (with an option to extend a subsequent 12 months). This DIP was not marketed and so the early part of the case will be spent presumably searching for alternatives. Because lenders surely love the idea of providing a DIP, the main purpose of which is to pay Skadden Arps’ and the Ad Hoc Group’s fees.

  • Jurisdiction: S.D. of New York (Judge Drain)

  • Capital Structure: $856mm (Wells Fargo Bank NA)

  • Professionals:

    • Legal: Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP (Jay Goffman, Mark McDermott, Evan Hill)

    • Managing Member: Drivetrain Advisors LLC (John Brecker)

    • Financial Advisor: Houlihan Lokey Capital Inc.

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

  • Other Parties in Interest:

    • Wells Fargo Bank NA

      • Legal: Arent Fox LLP (Andrew Silfen, Beth Brownstein)

    • Sponsor: Silver Point Capital LP

🚽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 - Pernix Therapeutics/Pernix Sleep Inc.

Pernix Therapeutics/Pernix Sleep Inc.

February 18, 2019

In our January 30th Members’-only briefing entitled “😢Who Will Remember Things Remembered?😢 ,” we included a segment subtitled “Pharma Continues to Show Distress (Long Opioid-Related BK)” in which we discussed how Pernix Therapeutics Holdings Inc. ($PTX) looked like an imminent bankruptcy candidate. We noted how the company had previously staved off bankruptcy thanks to a refinancing transaction with Highbridge Capital Management. That refinancing now looks like a perfectly-executed loan-to-own strategy: Phoenix Top Holdings LLC, an affiliate of Highbridge, will serve as the stalking horse bidder of the company’s assets in exchange for $75.6mm plus the assumption of certain liabilities. Highbridge will also, after a competitive process pitted against other debtholders like Deerfield Management Company LP, provide the Debtors with a $34.1mm DIP facility — of which $15mm is new money, $5mm is an accordian facility, and the rest is a roll-up of the pre-petition ABL.

  • Jurisdiction: D. of Delaware (Judge [ ])

  • Capital Structure: see link above.

  • Professionals:

    • Legal: Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP (Marshall Huebner, Eli Vonnegut, Christopher Robertson) & (local) Landis Rath & Cobb LLP (Adam Landis, Kerri Mumford, Jennifer Cree, Nicolas Jenner)

    • Financial Advisor: Guggenheim Partners LLC (Stuart Erickson)

    • Investment Banker: Ernst & Young LLP

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

  • Other Parties in Interest:

    • Stalking Horse Purchaser: Phoenix Top Holdings LLC (a Highbridge Capital Management affiliate)

    • Large debtholder: Deerfield Management Company LP

      • Legal: Sullivan & Cromwell LLP

    • DIP Agent: Cantor Fitzgerald Securities

      • Legal: Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP (Sarah Ward)

Updated: 2/19/19 at 8:51 CT

😷New Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Filing - Trident Holding Company LLC😷

Trident Holding Company LLC

February 10, 2019

It looks like all of those 2018 predictions about healthcare-related distress were off by a year. We’re merely in mid-February and already there has been a full slate of healthcare bankruptcy filings. Here, Trident Holding Company LLC, a Maryland-based provider of bedside diagnostic and other services (i.e., x-ray, ultrasound, cardiac monitoring) filed for bankruptcy in the Southern District of New York. What’s interesting about the filing is that it is particularly light on detail: it includes the standard description of the capital structure and recent efforts to restructure, but there is a dearth of information about the history of the company and its financial performance. There is, however, a restructuring support agreement with the company’s priority first lien lenders.

Here’s a quick look at the company’s capital structure which is a large factor driving the company into bankruptcy:

Source: First Day Declaration

Source: First Day Declaration

As you can see, the company has a considerable amount of debt. The above-reflected “Priority First Lien Facility” is a fairly recent development, having been put in place as recently as April 2018. That facility, provided by Silver Point, includes a $27.1mm prepayment fee triggered upon the filing of the bankruptcy case. That’s certain to be a point of interest to an Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors. It also contributed to an onerous amount of debt service. Per the company:

In the midst of market and competitive challenges, Trident has significant debt service obligations. Over the course of 2018, Trident paid approximately $26,185,667.75 in cash interest on the Secured Credit Facilities. On January 31, 2019, the Company missed an interest payment of $9,187,477.07 on the Secured Credit Facilities, resulting in an Event of Default on February 8, 2019 after the cure period expired.

But, wait. There’s more. The recent uptick in distressed healthcare activity is beginning to aggregate and create a trickle-down bankruptcies-creating-bankruptcies effect:

Moreover, a number of recent customer bankruptcies – including those of Senior Care Centers, LLC, 4 West Holdings, Inc., and Promise Healthcare Group, LLC – have exacerbated the Company’s liquidity shortfall by limiting the collectability of amounts owed from these entities. A number of other customers who have not yet filed bankruptcy cases are generally not paying the Debtors within contractual terms due to their own liquidity problems. As a result of these collection difficulties and challenges with the new billing system in the Sparks Glencoe billing center, the Debtors recorded $27.8 million of extraordinary bad debt expense in 2018 and $12.7 million in 2017.

Ouch. Not to state the obvious, but if the start of 2019 is any indication, this is only going to get worse. The company estimates a net operating cash loss of $9.1mm in the first 30 days of the case.

Given the company’s struggles and burdensome capital structure, the company has been engaging its lenders for well over a year. In the end, however, it couldn’t work out an out-of-court resolution. Instead, the company filed its bankruptcy with a “restructuring support agreement” with Silver Point which, on account of its priority first lien holdings, is positioned well to drive this bus. And by “drive this bus,” we mean jam the junior creditors. Per the RSA, Silver Point will provide a $50mm DIP and drive the company hard towards a business plan and plan of reorganization. Indeed, the business plan is due within 36 days and a disclosure statement is due within a week thereafter. Meanwhile, the RSA as currently contemplated, gives Silver Point $105mm of take-back term loan paper and 100% of the equity of the company (subject to dilution). The first lien holders have a nice blank in the RSA next to their recovery amount and that recovery is predicated upon…wait for it…

…a “death trap.” That is, if they accept the plan they’ll currently get “ [●]%” but if they reject the plan they’ll get a big fat donut. Likewise, the second lien holders. General unsecured claimants would get a pro rata interest in a whopping $100k. Or the equivalent of what Skadden will bill in roughly, call it, 3 days of work??

The business plan, meanwhile, ought to be interesting. By all appearances, the company is in the midst of a massive strategic pivot. In addition to undertaking a barrage of operational fixes “…such as optimized pricing, measures to improve revenue cycle management by increasing collection rates, rationalizing certain services, reducing labor costs, better managing vendor spend, and reducing insurance costs,” the company intends to focus on its core business and exit unprofitable markets. While it retreats in certain respects, it also intends to expand in others: for instance, the company intends to “expand home health services to respond to the shifting of patients from [skilled nursing facilities] into home care.” Per the company:

Toward this end, Trident conducted successful home health care pilot programs in 2018 in two markets to optimize its Care at Home business model with radiology technicians dedicated to servicing home health patients. Trident hopes to expand this business model to an additional seven markets in 2019.

Like we said, a pivot. Which begs the question “why?” In addition to the debt, the company noted several other factors that drove it into bankruptcy. Chief among them? The rise of home health care. More from the company:

Trident has suffered ripple effects from the distress faced by skilled nursing facilities (“SNF”), which are its primary direct customers. SNF occupancy rates have declined to a multi-year low as a result of structural and reimbursement changes not yet offset by demographic trends. These structural changes include, among other things, patient migration to home health care. The decline in SNF occupancy rates has led to reduced demand for Trident’s services. At the same time, Trident has only had limited success reducing costs in response to lower volumes, as volume declines are driven by lower utilization per facility rather than a reduction in the number of facilities served.

This is a trend worth continued watching. Who else — like Trident — will be affected by this?

Large general unsecured creditors of the business include Grosvenor Capital Management, Jones Day (to the tune of $2.3mm…yikes), Konica Minolta Healthcare Americas Inc., McKesson ($MCK)(again!!…rough couple of weeks at McKesson), Quest Diagnostics Inc. ($DGX), Cardinal Health Inc. ($CAH) and others. They must be really jacked up about that pro rata $100k!!

  • Jurisdiction: S.D. of New York (Judge Lane)

  • Capital Structure: see above.

  • Professionals:

    • Legal: Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP (Paul Leake, Jason Kestecher, James Mazza Jr., Justin Winerman)

    • Independent Director: Alexander D. Greene

    • Financial Advisor: Ankura Consulting (Russell Perry, Ben Jones)

    • Investment Banker: PJT Partners LP (Mark Buschmann, Josh Abramson, Willie Evarts, Meera Satiani, Elsa Zhang)

    • Claims Agent: Epiq Bankruptcy Solutions LLC (*click on the link above for free docket access)

  • Other Professionals:

    • Priority First Lien Admin Agent: SPCP Group LLC/Silver Point Finance LLC

      • Legal: Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison LLP (Alan Kornberg, Robert Britton, Lewis Clayton, Aidan Synnott, Christman Rice, Michael Turkel)

      • Financial Advisor: Houlihan Lokey LP

    • First Lien Agent: Cortland Capital Market Services LLC

      • Legal: White & Case LLP (Thomas Lauria, Erin Rosenberg, Jason Zakia, Harrison Denman, John Ramirez)

    • Ad Hoc Group of First Lien Lenders

      • Legal: Kirkland & Ellis LLP (Patrick Nash)

      • Financial Advisor: Greenhill & Co. Inc.

    • Second Lien Agent: Ares Capital Corporation

    • Ad Hoc Group of Second Lien Lenders

      • Legal: Latham & Watkins (Richard Levy, James Ktsanes)

    • Large Creditor: McKesson Medical-Surgical Inc.

      • Legal: Buchalter P.C. (Jeffrey Garfinkle)

    • Large Creditor: Quest Diagnostics

      • Legal: Morris James LLP (Brett Fallon)

    • Equity Sponsor: Revelstoke Capital Partners

      • Legal: Winston & Strawn LLP (Carey Schreiber, Carrie Hardman)

    • Equity Sponsor: Welltower Inc.

      • Legal: Sidley Austin LLP (Andrew Propps, Bojan Guzina)

    • Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors

      • Legal: Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP (David Posner, Gianfranco Finizio, Kelly Moynihan)

      • Financial Advisor: AlixPartners LLP (David MacGreevey)



New Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Filing - Synergy Pharmaceuticals Inc.

December 12, 2018

On November 11 and then, in a more fulsome manner in November 18’s “😬Biopharma is in Pain😬,” we noted that Synergy Pharmaceuticals Inc. ($SGYP) “appears to be on the brink of bankruptcy.” Looks like we were right on. This morning (12/12/18) at 4:37am (PETITION Note: remember that if you think that being a biglaw attorney is glamorous), the company and an affiliate filed for bankruptcy in the Southern District of New York.

Synergy is a biopharmaceutical company that develops and commercializes gastrointestinal therapies; its primary speciality revolves around uroguanylin, “a naturally occurring and ednogenous human GI peptide, for the treatment of GI diseases and disorders” Geez…bankers and lawyers have nothing on scientists when it comes to the vernacular. The company has one commercial product (TRULANCE) and one product in development. The company owns 33 patents.

We previously noted:

The company has a $200mm 9.5% ‘25 secured term loan with CRG (~$100mm funded plus PIK interest) that has been amended a bazillion times to account for the fact that its revenues suck, its market cap sucks, and that its on the verge of tripping, or has tripped, numerous covenants including, a “minimum market capitalization” covenant and a “minimum revenue covenant.” In its most recent 10-Q, the company noted:

To date the Company has been unable to further amend the agreement with respect to the financial and revenue covenants. The Company is continuing discussions with CRG and has received a temporary waiver on the minimum market cap covenant through November 12, 2018. The Company is currently pursuing alternatives that better align with its business, but there is no assurance that Synergy can secure CRG’s consent or otherwise achieve a transaction to refinance or otherwise repay CRG on commercially reasonable terms, in which case we could default under the term loan agreement. If CRG does not grant a further waiver beyond November 12, 2018 the Company will likely be in default of the minimum market cap covenant.

In its bankruptcy filing, however, the company takes a decidedly less aggressive posture vis-a-vis CRG (which makes sense…CRG is, after all, its proposed DIP lender) when explaining the factors leading to the commencement of its chapter 11 cases. While the company does highlight lack of access to capital markets (which, at least as far as we read it, is an implicit jab at CRG), the company primarily blames TRULANCE’s slow sales growth, market access, competitive landscape and a smaller-than-anticipated total addressable market for its travails.

For its part, Centerview Partners has been engaged in a less than ideal sellside process here. According to the company’s papers, Centerview has been trying to sell the company since 2015. Now, unless there is some crazy element to this engagement, most bankers are compensated on the basis of success fees. They want to a large purchase price and a short marketing process to get the best of both worlds: a huge payday without huge utilization. That does not appear to be the case here. 3 years!

Still, they located a buyer. Bausch Health Companies (“BHC”) has agreed to be the stalking horse purchaser of the company’s assets. BHC would get substantially all of the company’s assets — including its IP, certain customer and vendor contracts, A/R, and goodwill. In exchange, they would pay approximately $185mm in cash (minus certain deductions and adjustments) and $15mm in severance obligations.

CRG is the company’s proposed DIP lender with a $155mm facility, of which $45mm represents new money.

  • Jurisdiction: S.D. of New York (Judge Garrity)

  • Capital Structure: $110mm 9.5% ‘25 secured term loan, $19mm 7.5% ‘19 senior convertible notes (Wells Fargo NA)

  • Company Professionals:

    • Legal: Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP (Ron Meisler, Lisa Laukitis, Christopher Dressel, Jennifer Madden, Christine Okike) & (special counsel) Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP

    • Legal Conflicts Counsel: Togut Segal & Segal LLP (Albert Togut, Neil Berger, Kyle Ortiz)

    • Board of Directors

      • Legal: Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP

    • Independent Director: Joseph Farnan

      • Legal: Kirkland & Ellis LLP

    • Financial Advisor: FTI Consulting Inc. (Michael Katzenstein, Sean Gumbs, Heath Gray, Om Dhavalikar, Tom Sledjeski, John Hayes, Andrew Kopfensteiner)

    • Investment Banker: Centerview Partners Holdings LP (Samuel Greene, Josh Thornton, Ercument Tokat)

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

  • Other Parties in Interest:

    • Prepetition Agent & DIP Lender: CRG Servicing LLC

      • Legal: Venable LLP (Jeffrey Sabin, Lawrence Cooke)

    • Stalking Horse Bidder: Bausch Health Companies Inc.

      • Legal: Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz (Richard Mason, Michael Benn)

    • Ad Hoc Committee of Equity Holders

      • Legal: Cole Schotz PC (Ryan Jareck, Irving Walker, Norman Pernick, Mark Tsukerman)

    • Official Committee of Equity Security Holders

      • Legal: Gibson Dunn & Crutcher LLP (David Feldman, Matthew Kelsey, Alan Moskowitz, J. Eric Wise)

      • Financial Advisor: Houlihan Lokey Capital, Inc. (Christopher Di Mauro, Geoffrey Coutts)

    • Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors (Highbridge Capital Management, 1992 MSF International Ltd., 1992 Tactical Credit Master Fund LP)

      • Legal: Latham & Watkins LLP (Richard Levy, Jeffrey Mispagel, Matthew Warren, Blake Denton, Christopher Harris)

      • Financial Advisor: Alvarez & Marsal LLP (Mark Greenberg, Richard Newman, Jason Ivy, Martin McGahan, Allison Hoeinghaus, Seth Waschitz, Sean Skinner, Michael Sullivan)

      • Investment Bank: Jefferies LLC (Leon Szlezinger, Jeffrey Finger)

💥New Chapter 11 Bankruptcy: Sears Holdings Corporation💥

Sears Holdings Corporation

October 15, 2018

Finally.

Early this morning, Illinois-based Sears Holdings Corporation ($SHLD) and approximately 49 affiliated entities (including KMart) finally filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy. The company lists a staggering $11.339 billion of total debts and $6.937 billion of assets.

The well-known company has 866 full-line and specialty stores as of August 4, 2018. In its chapter 11 petition, it boasts of its legacy as an “integrated retailer with significant physical and tangible assets, as well as virtual capabilities enabled through technology.” Yes, you read that correctly: they actually say “virtual capabilities enabled through technology.” That right there may help inform EVERYONE why this storied retailer has found its way into bankruptcy court. To the last, Sears stands out for its ability to appear out of touch.

The company appears to have a commitment for a $1.875 billion debtor-in-possession (“DIP”) asset-backed credit facility, including an increase of $300mm from its existing facility as well as an agreement over the use of the company’s lenders’ cash collateral. According to a company press release, the company is also negotiating an additional $300mm commitment from ESL Investments Inc. (“ESL”), the company’s largest shareholder and the investment vehicle of Eddie Lampert. The company intends to reorganize around a smaller store platform of “EBITDA-positive stores.” To this end, the company will close 142 stores near the end of the year adding to the previously announced 46 stores set to close in November 2018 — potentially further perpetuating the hurt put on U.S.-based malls over the last several years. Meanwhile, the company continues to negotiate an asset purchase agreement with ESL for “a large portion of the Company’s store base.” This would, obviously, keep the enterprise from liquidating and potentially help maintain thousands of jobs: Sears currently employs approximately 90k people.

While Eddie Lampert will remain Chairman of the Board, he has resigned as CEO of the company. Godspeed, Eddie.

The company’s top listed creditors at the time of filing include The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation and various trustees under five different tranches of unsecured notes totaling over $3 billion in principal amount (BNY Midwest Trust Company, Computershare Trust Company NA, The Chase Manhattan Bank NA). Trade creditors include Whirlpool Corporation ($23.4mm), Frigidaire Company ($18.6mm), and Winia Daewoo Electronics America ($15.2mm).

We will update this post on Wednesday in our next briefing; we are particularly excited to see how the company spins the “factors” that led to its appearance in bankruptcy court. Here’s one explanation:

And here’s another — seemingly more-on-point — one:

Screen Shot 2018-10-15 at 6.33.14 AM.png
  • Jurisdiction: S.D.N.Y. (Judge Drain)

  • Capital Structure: $11.339b debt     

  • Company Professionals:

    • Legal: Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP (Ray Schrock, Garrett Fail, Jacqueline Marcus, Sunny Singh)

    • CRO/Financial Advisor: M-III Partners, LP (Mohsin Meghji, Colin Adams, Brian Griffith, Christopher Good, Mary Korycki, Kevin Tanaka, Enrique Acevedo, Wesley Sima, Noah Zatzkin, Joseph Frantz, Nicholas Weber, Ravi Ramnani )

    • Investment Banker: Lazard Freres & Company

    • Restructuring Committee’s Independent Directors: William Transier, Alan Carr, Paul DePodesta, Ann Reese

    • Restructuring Sub-Committee (RSC): Alan Carr and William Transier

    • Legal to RSC: Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison LLP (Paul Basta, Kelley Cornish, Lewis Clayton, Susanna Buergel, Robert Britton, Jonathan Hurwitz, Emma Carlson, Teresa Lii)

    • Financial Advisors to RSC: Alvarez & Marsal North America LLC (Dennis Stogsdill, Nick Grossi, Brian Corio, Jonah Galaz, Andrew Gasbarra, Jonathan Bain, Jordan Kravette)

    • Investment Banker to RSC: Evercore Group LLC (Daniel Aronson, Jeremy Matican, Guy McCumber, Siddhesh Patkar, Jonathan Kamel, Ajith Sukumar)

    • Conflicts Counsel: Young Conaway Stargatt & Taylor LLP (Pauline Morgan, Rolin Bissell, Ryan Bartley, Travis Buchanan)

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

  • Other Parties in Interest:

    • Large Shareholders: ESL Investments. Legal: Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP (James Bromley, Sean O’Neal, Andrew Weaver)

    • Prepetition RCF, Term Loans, FILO & DIP ABL Agent: Bank of America NA. Legal: Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP (Paul Leake, Shana Elberg, George Howard)

    • Citibank NA. Legal: Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP (Marshall Huebner, Eli Vonnegut)

    • Large Shareholder: Fairholme Capital Management LLC. Legal: Sullivan & Cromwell LLP (Andrew Dietderich, Brian Glueckstein, David Zylberberg)

    • PBGC. Legal: Locke Lord LLP (David Wirt)

    • Debtors’ IP/Ground Lease Term Loan Lender: SHLD Lendco LLC. Legal: Cahill Gordon & Reindel LLP (Joel Levitin, Richard Stieglitz Jr.)

    • Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors

      • Legal: Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP (Ira Dizengoff, Philip Dublin, Abid Quereshi, SARA Brauner)

      • Legal (Conflicts): Herrick Feinstein LLP (Sean O’Donnell, Stephen Selbst, Steven Smith)

      • Financial Advisor: FTI Consulting Inc. (Matt Diaz, Conor Tully, Michael Berkin, Marshal Eisler, Kenny O’Trakoun, Morgan McCaskey, Samuel Star)

      • Investment Banker: Houlihan Lokey (Saul Burian, Eric Siegert, Brad Geer, Surbhi Gupta, Greg Rinsky, Tom Hedus, Ross Rosenstein, Ryan Conroy, John Hartigan, Ahmed Mumtaz, Jack Foster, James Lai, Natalie Weelborg, Andrew Felman, Matthew Stadtmauer)

    • Cyrus Capital Partners LP

      • Legal: Milbank Tweed Hadley & McCloy LLP (Eric Reimer, Thomas Kreller, Craig Price)

    • Indenture Trustee to Medium Term Notes: The Bank of New York Mellon Trust Company, N.A.

      • Legal: Carter Ledyard & Milburn LLP (James Gadsden, Leonardo Trivigno)

Updated 11/30/18


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New Chapter 22 Filing - New MACH Gen LLC

New MACH Gen LLC

6/11/18

In ⓶⓶Is A Fresh Batch of Chapter 22s Coming?⓶⓶, we asked "Did Talen Energy's Acquisition of MACH Gen Miss the Mark? (Short Synergy)". Apparently the answer is yes to both questions: MACH Gen is now in bankruptcy court for the second time in four years. 

New MACH Gen LLC and four affiliated debtors have filed a prepackaged chapter 11 bankruptcy that seeks to partially equitize its first lien debt, transfer interests in the Harquahala facility in Arizona to the First Lien Lenders, eliminate approximately $95 million of debt off of the company's balance sheet, shed approximately $20 million of annual interest expense, and reorganize around two of the debtor entities. If the plan is effectuated, the company will emerge from bankruptcy with a (slightly) trimmed down balance sheet including (i) $512 million of first lien debt split among a revolving credit facility and two term loans and provided by the prepetition First Lien Lenders and (ii) approximately $25 million in a new second lien term loan provided by Talen Energy Supply LLC. The First Lien Lenders have also agreed to provide a $20 million DIP credit facility. The proposed plan of reorganization appears to be fully consensual among the various debt and equity interest holders. Accordingly, the company hopes to confirm the plan within 45 days of filing and obtain regulatory approvals another within an additional 45 days. 

The company is the owner and manager of a portfolio of three natural gas-fired electric generating facilities: (1) a 1,080 MW facility located in Athens, New York that achieved commercial operation on May 5, 2004 (the “Athens Facility”); (2) a 1,092 MW facility located in Maricopa County, Arizona, that achieved commercial operation on September 11, 2004 (the “Harquahala Facility”); and (3) a 360 MW facility, located in Charlton, Massachusetts, that achieved commercial operation on April 12, 2001 (the “Millennium Facility,” and collectively with the Athens Facility and the Harquahala Facility, the “Facilities”). The company generates revenue by selling energy, capacity and ancillary services from the Facilities into relevant power markets. In the last fiscal year, the company generated approximately $269 million of operating revenue at a net loss of approximately $10 million. 

These numbers shouldn't really be surprising. In May we highlighted the following:

"Here is where natural gas prices were (i) in April 2014 around the time of the bankruptcy filing (5.97), (ii) in November 2015 (2.08) at the time of the Talen acquisition, (iii) in June 2016 (2.57) at the time of the announced Riverstone transaction, (iv) in December 2016 at the time the transaction closed (3.58) and (v) where they stand now (~2.69):"
Screen Shot 2018-06-11 at 9.41.11 AM.png

This change in the natural gas market (and regulatory hurdles) flipped "compelling future projections" to "a challenging operating environment" and, in 2016, the company "significantly underperformed" its way to a net loss of $589.8 million. Given the current environment for natural gas, we'll see whether this transaction does the trick. After all, as the company notes, "[a]though the Plan will result in the elimination of debt, Reorganized MACH Gen will continue to have a significant amount of indebtedness after the Effective Date." See you in four years? 

  • Jurisdiction: D. of Delaware
  • Capital Structure: $132.9mm first lien RCF (CLMG Corp., Beal Bank SSB), $465.1mm first lien TL,      
  • Company Professionals:
    • Legal: Young Conaway Stargatt & Taylor LLP (Robert Brady, Edmon Morton, Kenneth Enos, Elizabeth Justison)
    • Financial Advisor: Alvarez & Marsal LLC (Ryan Omohundro)
    • Investment Banker: Evercore LLC (Bo Yi)
    • Claims Agent: Prime Clerk LLC (*click on company name above for free docket access)
  • Other Parties in Interest:
  • First Lien & DIP Agent: CLMG Corp.
  • First Lien Lenders: Beal Bank USA/SSB
    • Legal: White & Case LLP (Thomas Lauria, Scott Greissman, Elizabeth Feld)
  • Talen Energy Supply LLC 
    • Legal: Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP (Lisa Laukitis) 

New Chapter 11 Filing - VER Technologies Holdco LLC

VER Technologies Holdco LLC

4/4/18

VER Technologies, a Los Angeles-based provider of for-rent production equipment and engineering support for live and taped television, cinema, live events and broadcast media has filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy in the District of Delaware. We hadn't heard of these guys before and we're guessing that, unless you live in Los Feliz or Silverlake, you haven't either. Suffice it to say that they're they guys behind the guy, so to speak. Recent broadcast work included the 2018 Super Bowl broadcast (eat it Brady); they also serve over 350 live music customers per year including the Biebs and the band-formerly-known-as-Coldplay-now-called-the-Chainsmokers. 

In some respects, this is a story about attempted avoidance of disruption leading to disruption. The company initially specialized in rentals with no equipment customization but, with time, opted to expand its product and service offerings to include customization. This endeavor, however, proved capital intensive to the point where the company exceeded $270 million on its prepetition asset-backed lending facility. This triggered cash sweeps to the company's bank which proved to further constrain liquidity. This sparked a need for an operational and balance sheet restructuring to maximize cash and get the company to the point of a potential transaction.

In other respects, this is another leveraged buy-out that saddled the target company with a wee bit too much debt. Moreover, the company seems to have undertaken a number of ill-advised or ill-executed operational initiatives that, ultimately, undercut revenue. It happens. 

Now the company -- supported by a restructuring support agreement with its lenders (including funds managed by GSO Capital Partners) -- hopes to facilitate a pre-negotiated merger with an entity controlled by Production Resource Group LLCl ("PRG"). PRG is a Jordan Company-owned provider of entertainment and event technology solutions. Naturally, the term lenders will also own a portion of the reorganized company. Per the term sheet, PRG will get 72% preferred and 80% common; the term lenders will get the delta. The reorganized company will still have a meaningful amount of debt on its balance sheet with a proposed new (unquantified) first lien term loan and a $435 million new second lien term loan. 

The company has secured a proposed $364.7 million DIP credit facility ($300mm ABL, $64.7mm Term Loan, of which $50mm is new money) to support its time in bankruptcy. The company seeks to be in and out of bankruptcy court in approximately 115 days. 

  • Jurisdiction: D. of Delaware (Judge Gross)
  • Capital Structure: $296.3mm ABL Facility (Bank of America NA), $424.2mm term loan (GSO Capital Partners LP/Wilmington Trust NA), $14mm FILO loan, $18.75mm New FTF Inc. Note, $7.5mm Catterton Notes.  
  • Company Professionals:
    • Legal: Kirkland & Ellis LLP (Joshua Sussberg, Ryan Blaine Bennett, Christine Pirro, Jamie Netznik) & (local) Klehr Harrison Harvey Branzburg LLP (Domenic Pacitti, Morton Branzburg)
    • Financial Advisor/CRO: AlixPartners LLC (Lawrence Young, Stephen Spitzer, Bradley Hunter, Christopher Blacker, James Guyton, Brad Hall)
    • Investment Banker: PJT Partners LP (Nick Leone)
    • Strategic Communications: Joele Frank
    • Independent Director: Eugene Davis
      • Legal: Kramer Levin Naftalis Frankel LLP (Philip Bentley)
    • Claims Agent: KCC (*click on company name above for free docket access)
  • Other Parties in Interest:
    • Prepetition ABL Agent and DIP ABL Agent:
      • Legal: Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP (Shana Elberg, Christopher Dressel, Anthony Clark, Robert Weber, Cameron Fee)
      • Financial Advisor: Perella Weinberg Partners
    • DIP Term Loan Agent: Wilmington Trust NA
      • Legal: Alston & Bird LLP (Jason Solomon)
    • Supporting Term Loan Lenders: GSO Capital Partners, ABR Reinsurance Ltd., Consumer Program Administrators Inc., Irving LLC
      • Legal: Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP (Frederick Eisenbeigler, Andrew Gallo, Christopher Carter) & Richards Layton & Finger PA (Mark Collins, Amanda Steele, Joseph Barsalona)
    • 12% Subordinated Noteholder:
      • Legal: King & Spalding LLP (Jeffrey Pawlitz, Michael Handler)
    • Indenture Trustee FTF Note:
      • Legal: Robins Kaplan LLP (Howard Weg, Michael Delaney)
    • Production Resource Group LLC
      • Legal: Greenberg Traurig LLP (Todd Bowen) & Morrison Cohen LLP (Joseph Moldovan, Robert Dakis)
    • Wells Fargo NA
      • Legal: Otterbourg PC (Andrew Kramer)
    • Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors
      • Legal: SulmeyerKupetz PC (Alan Tippie, Mark Horoupian, Victor Sahn, David Kupetz) & (local) Whiteford Taylor & Preston LLC (Christopher Samis, L. Katherine Good, Aaron Stulman, Kevin Hroblak)
      • Financial Advisor: Province Inc. (Carol Cabello) 

Updated 5/19/18

New Chapter 11 - Remington Outdoor Company

Remington Outdoor Company

3/25/18

Remington Outdoor Company, a gun manufacturer, has finally filed for bankruptcy - a day after Americans took to the streets to #MarchforourLives. Ah, bankruptcy irony. The company's operations are truly national in scope; it has manufacturing facilities in New York and Alabama and a primary ammunition plant in Arkansas. Its "principal customers are various mass market retail chains (e.g., Wal-Mart and Dick's Sporting Goods) and specialty retail stores (e.g., Bass Pro Shops and Cabela's) and wholesale distributors (e.g., Sports South)." Guns! #MAGA!!

Why did the company have to file for bankruptcy? We refer you to our mock "First Day Declaration" from February here. Much of it continues to apply. Indeed, our mockery of the change in tone from President Obama to President Trump was spot on: post Trump's election, the company's inventory supply far exceeded demand. The (fictional) threat of the government going house-to-house to collect guns is a major stimulant to demand, apparently. Here is the change in financial performance,

"At the conclusion of 2017, the Debtors had realized approximately $603.4 million in sales and an adjusted EBITDA of $33.6 million. In comparison, in 2015 and 2016, the Debtors had achieved approximately $808.9 million and $865.1 million in sales and $64 million and $119.8 million in adjusted EBITDA, respectively."

Thanks Trump. 

We'd be remiss, however, if we didn't also note that NOWHERE in the company's bankruptcy filings does it mention the backlash against guns or the company's involvement in shootings...namely, the one that occurred in Las Vegas. 

The company, therefore, negotiated with its various lenders and arrived at a restructuring support agreement. The agreement provides for debtor-in-possession credit ($193mm asset-backed DIP + $100mm term loan DIP + $45mm DIP, the latter of which is a roll-up of a bridge loan provided by lenders prior to the filing). Upon the effective date of a plan of reorganization, the third lien lenders and term lenders will own the reorganized company. 

  • Jurisdiction: D. of Delaware 
  • Capital Structure: $225mm ABL (Bank of America, $114.5mm funded), $550.5mm term loan (Ankura Trust Company LLC), $226mm 7.875% Senior Secured Notes due 2020 (Wilmington Trust NA), $12.5mm secured Huntsville Note     
  • Company Professionals:
    • Legal: Milbank Tweed Hadley & McCloy LLP (Gregory Bray, Tyson Lomazow, Thomas Kreller, Haig Maghakian) & (local) Pachulski Stang Ziehl & Jones LLP (Laura Davis Jones, Timothy Cairns, Joseph Mulvihill)
    • Financial Advisor: Alvarez & Marsal LLC (Joseph Sciametta)
    • Investment Banker: Lazard (Ari Lefkovits)
    • Claims Agent: Prime Clerk LLC (*click on company name above for free docket access)
  • Other Parties in Interest:
    • DIP ABL Agent ($193mm): Bank of America NA (DIP ABL Lenders: Bank of America NA, Wells Fargo Bank NA, Regions Bank, Branch Banking and Trust Company, Synovus Bank, Fifth Third Bank, Deutsche Bank AG New York Branch)
      • Legal: Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP (Paul Leake, Shana Elberg, Jason Liberi, Cameron Fee)
    • Admin Agent to the DIP TL: Ankura Trust Company LLC
      • Legal: Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP (Damian Schaible, Darren Klein, Michele McGreal, Dylan Consla) & (local) Richards Layton & Finger LLP (Mark Collins, Michael Merchant, Joseph Barsalona)
    • Ad Hoc Group of TL Lenders 
      • Legal: O'Melveny & Myers LLP (John Rapisardi, Andrew Parlen, Joseph Zujkowski, Amalia Sax-Bolder) & (local) Richards Layton & Finger LLP (Mark Collins, Michael Merchant, Joseph Barsalona)
    • Third Lien Noteholders
      • Legal: Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP (Rachel Strickland, Joseph Minias, Debra McElligott) & (local) Young Conaway Stargatt & Taylor LLP (Edmon Morton, Allison Mielke)
    • Wells Fargo Bank NA
      • Legal: Otterbourg PC (Andrew Kramer)
    • Cerberus Operations and Advisory Company, LLC
      • Legal: Schulte Roth & Zabel LLP (David Hillman)
    • Reorganized Board of Directors (Anthony Acitelli, Chris Brady, George W. Wurtz III, G.M. McCarroll, Gene Davis, Ron Coburn, Ken D'Arcy)
  • Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors
    • Legal: Fox Rothschild LLP (Michael Menkowitz, Paul Labov, Jason Manfrey, Jesse Harris, Seth Niederman)

Updated: 4/27/18

New Chapter 11 Bankruptcy - Global Brokerage Inc. ($GLBR)

Global Brokerage Inc.

  • 12/11/17 Recap: Holding company which holds, as its primary asset, an interest in a non-debtor online forex trading company filed a prepackaged bankruptcy to restructure its balance sheet. Troubles for the company began in early 2015 when "unprecedented volatility" in the euro-to-franc currency rate led the Swiss National Bank to eliminate its 1.2 france per euro floor. Instantly, the company was in breach of certain regulatory capital requirements and had to cease operations. After getting rescue financing from Leucadia National Corp. - bridging the company back into regulatory compliance - the company knew that the short term bridge would become an issue. A looming NASDAQ delisting triggered a "fundamental change" call provision on the notes which, of course, the company couldn't pay. The company's plan, solicited prior to filing, is basically an amend-and-extend. The term loan maturity is pushed one year and the converts will get (secured) take-back paper in the same nominal amount with maturity extended five years (with an interest rate uptick from 2.25% to 7%...PIK Toggle, of course). 
  • Jurisdiction: S.D. of New York (Judge Wiles)
  • Capital Structure: $300mm secured term loan (Leucadia National Corp), $172.5mm 2.25% convertible notes (Bank of New York Mellon)    
  • Company Professionals:
    • Legal: King & Spalding LLP (Arthur Steinberg, Michael Handler, Sarah Borders, Thaddeus Wilson, Elizabeth Dechant)
    • Financial Advisor: Perella Weinberg Partners
    • Claims Agent: Prime Clerk LLC (*click on company name above for free docket access)
  • Other Parties in Interest:
    • Ad Hoc Group of Convertible Noteholders (683 Capital Partners LP, Lazard Asset Management LLC, Penderfund Capital Management Ltd., Phoenix Investment Advisor LLC, Wolverine Flagship Fund Trading Limited)
      • Legal: Vinson & Elkins LLP (Steven Abramowitz, David Meyer, Lauren Kazer, Eric Hilmo)
    • Leucadia National Corp.
      • Legal: Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP (Eric Ivestor, Gregory Fernicola)
    • Significant Equityholder: Franklin Resources Inc. 

New Chapter 11 Filing - Pacific Drilling S.A.

Pacific Drilling S.A.

  • 11/12/17 Recap: Another offshore driller finds its way into bankruptcy and, boy!, does its filing attempt to paint one rosy optimistic picture of its particular "competitive strength[]" in the offshore drilling space. But, first, let's take a step back: here, Pacific Drilling ($PACDF), an offshore drilling company formed in 2011 under Luxembourg law, filed bankruptcy in the Southern District of New York after over a year - and we mean YEAR - of speculation that this would end up where it now is. After all, when oil prices are where they are and you provide global ultra-deepwater drilling and complex well construction services to the oil and natural gas industry with high-specification drillships generally stationed in the Gulf of Mexico, the Federal Republic of Nigeria and the Islamic Republic of Mauritania, well, we'd venture an educated guess that the math simply ain't gonna add up. Certainly not at "day rates" averaging an estimated $155k. And so the company has three drillships contracted currently: two on short term agreements and, luckily, one at a well-above market contractual dayrate through September 2019. The others sit "smart-stacked." Choice quote, "My view in light of over 20 years in the industry is that recovery in the market for drilling contracts is a question of “when” not “if”. Pacific Drilling continues to have advantages over competitors with older fleets, as high-specification drilling units are generally better suited to meet the requirements of customers for drilling in deepwater, complex geological formations with challenging well profiles or remote locations. Furthermore, the uniformity and mobility of the Company’s fleet allow a Smart Stacking strategy that will continue to yield cost savings and flexibility if the downturn is prolonged." Clearly those advantages weren't so clear as to form consensus around the negotiating table with the various parties in interest as there is no restructuring support agreement in place here. Nothing like a good old-fashioned free fall into bankruptcy court, an increasingly-rare occurrence these days. 
  • Jurisdiction: S.D. of New York
  • Capital Structure: $3.188b total debt. Ship Group A Debt: $475mm RCF (Citibank NA), $750mm '20 5.375% Notes (Deutsche Bank Trust Company Americas), $718mm Term Loan B Credit Facility (Citibank NA). Ship Group B Debt (SSCF): $492.5mm 3.75% commercial tranche and $492.5mm (Wilmington Trust NA), combined post-amort equaliing $661.5mm outstanding. Ship Group C Debt: $438.4mm '17 7.25% senior secured notes (Deutsche Bank Trust Company Americas)
  • Company Professionals:
    • Legal: Sullivan & Cromwell LLP (Andrew Dietderich, Brian Glueckstein, John Hardiman, Noam Weiss) & Togut Segal & Segal LLP (Albert Togut, Frank Oswald, Scott Ratner)
    • Financial Advisor: Evercore Partners International LLP 
    • Investment Banker: AlixPartners LLP (James Mesterharm)
    • Claims Agent: Prime Clerk LLC (*click on company name above for free docket access)
  • Other Parties in Interest:
    • RCF Agent: Citibank NA
      • Legal: Shearman & Sterling LLP (Fredric Sosnick)
      • Financial Advisor: PJT Partners LP
    • Ad Hoc Group of RCF Lenders
      • Legal: White & Case LLP
    • SSCF Agent: Wilmington Trust NA
      • Legal: Milbank Tweed Hadley & McCloy LLP (Dennis Dunne, Tyson Lomazow, Matthew Brod)
      • Financial Advisor: Moelis & Company LLC
    • Ad Hoc Group of Ship Group C Debt, 2020 Notes and Term Loan B
      • Legal: Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison LLP (Andrew Rosenberg, Elizabeth McColm, Christopher Hopkins)
      • Financial Advisor: Houlihan Lokey
    • 2017 and 2020 Notes Indenture Trustee(s): Deutsche Bank Trust Company Americas
      • Legal: Moses & Singer LLP
    • Large Equityholder: Quantum Pacific (Gibraltar) Limited
      • egal: Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP (Jay Goffman, George Howard)

Updated 11/15/17 at 5:09 pm CT

New CBCA Proceeding - Concordia International Group

Concordia International Group

  • 10/20/17 Recap: Canadian-based pharmaceutical company filed for a stay under the Canada Business Corporations Act (CBCA) to effectuate a plan to de-lever its balance sheet. The company has a portfolio of 200+ "off-patient" skus with sales all across the world. The company blamed the need for the filing on (i) the proliferation of competitive generic products, (ii) the introduction of new products that treat the same ailments Concordia addresses, (iii) drug pricing pressures (including regulatory pressures in the UK), and its highly-levered balance sheet. The company intends to deploy its "DELIVER" strategy - not to be confused with what should be an obvious DELEVER strategy, but we digress. This acronym stands for a bunch of trite stuff like "Drive growth, "Expand," "Level-set the U.S. Business," "Increase the Product Pipeline," blah blah boring blah blah. In other words, effectively operate a pharma business - the EOPB strategy. Fine, not quite the same ring to it. 
  • Jurisdiction: Superior Court of Ontario
  • Capital Structure: $1.068b secured term loan, £485.63mm secured term loan. $350mm 9% '22 senior secured first lien notes, $135mm 9.5% '22 extended unsecured bridge loan ($100.83 funded ex-interest), $45mm 9.5% '17 equity unsecured bridge loan ($33.61mm ex-interest), $735mm 7% '23 unsecured notes (ex-interest), and $790mm 9.5% '22 unsecured notes (ex-interest)(US Bank NA). Public equity ($CXR).     
  • Company Professionals:
    • Legal: Skadden Arps Meagher & Flom LLP (Paul Leake, Shana Elberg) & (Canadian) Goodmans LLP (Robert Chadwick, Brendan O'Neil, Caroline Descours, Ryan Baulke)
    • Financial Advisor: Perella Weinberg Partners LP
  • Other Parties in Interest:
    • Secured Term Loan Agent: Goldman Sachs Bank USA
      • Legal: Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP (Damian Schaible)
    • Secured Debtholders Committee
      • Legal: White & Case LLP & (Canadian) Osler Hoskin & Harcourt LLP (Marc Wasserman, Martino Calvaruso)
    • Trustee for Secured and Unsecured Notes: US Bank NA
    • Unsecured Debtholders Committee
      • Legal: Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison LLP & (Canadian) Bennett Jones LLP (Kevin Zych, Sean Zweig)

Updated 10/26/17

New Chapter 11 Bankruptcy & CCAA - Toys "R" Us Inc.

Toys "R" Us Inc.

  • 9/19/17 Recap: So. Much. To. Unpack. Here. We've previously discussed the run-up to this massive chapter 11 bankruptcy filing here and here. Still, suffice it to say that, unlike many of the other retailers that have predictably filed for bankruptcy thus far in 2017, this one was different. This one seemingly came out of nowhere - particularly given the proximity to the holiday shopping season. Before we note what this case is, lets briefly cover what it isn't and clear the noise that is pervasive on the likes of Twitter: this is NOT "RIP" Toys "R" Us. We don't get overly sentimental usually but the papers filed with the bankruptcy court were well-written and touching: this is a store, a brand, that means a lot to a lot of people. And it's not going anywhere (the company will have its challenges to assure people that this is the case). This is a financial restructuring not a liquidation: the company simply hasn't been able to evolve while paying $400mm in annual interest expense on over $5b of private equity infused debt. Plain and simple. Yes, there are other challenges (blah blah blah, Amazon), but with that debt overhang, it appears the company hasn't been able to confront them (PETITION side note: an ill-conceived deal with Amazon 18 years ago is mind-blowing when viewed from the perspective of Amazon's long game). With this filing, the company is signaling that the time for short term band-aids to address its capital structure is over. Now, "[t]he time for change, and reinvestment in operations, has come." Decisive. Management isn't messing around anymore. With a reduction in debt, the company will be unshackled and able to focus on "general upkeep and the condition of...stores, [its] inability to provide expedited shipping options, and [its] lack of a subscription-based delivery service." Indeed, the company intends to use a $3.1b debtor-in-possession credit facility to begin investing in modernization immediately.
  • Interesting Facts:
    • Toy Manufacturers: Mattel ($MAT)(approx $136mm), Hasbro ($HAB) (approx $59mm) & Lego (approx $31.5mm) are among the top general unsecured creditors of the company. Mattel and Hasbro's stock traded down quite a bit yesterday on the rampant news of this filing. Query whether any of the $325mm of requested critical vendor money will apply to these companies.
    • The Power of the Media (read: NOT "fake news"): This CNBC piece helped push the company into bankruptcy. Bankruptcy professionals were retained in July (or earlier in the case of Lazard) to pursue capital structure solutions. In August the company engaged with some of its lenders. But then "...a news story published on September 6, 2017, reporting that the Debtors were considering a chapter 11 filing, started a dangerous game of dominos: within a week of its publication, nearly 40 percent of the Company’s domestic and international product vendors refused to ship product without cash on delivery, cash in advance, or, in some cases, payment of all outstanding obligations. Further, many of the credit insurers and factoring parties that support critical Toys “R” Us vendors withdrew support. Given the Company’s historic average of 60-day trade terms, payment of cash on delivery would require the Debtors to immediately obtain a significant amount—over $1.0 billion—of new liquidity." 
    • Revenue. The company generates 40% of its annual revenue during the holiday season.
    • Footprint. The company has approximately 1,697 stores and 257 licensed stores in 38 countries, plus additional e-commerce sites in various countries. The company has been shedding burdensome above-market leases and combining its Babies and Toys shops under one roof; it intends to continue its review of its real estate portfolio. Read: there WILL be store closures.
    • Eff the Competition. Toys has some choice words for its competition embedded in its bankruptcy papers; it accuses Walmart ($WMT) and Target ($TGT)(the "big box retailers") of slashing prices on toys and using toys as a loss leader to get bodies in doors; it further notes that "retailers such as Amazon are not concerned with making a profit at this juncture, rendering their pricing model impossible to compete with..." ($AMZN). Yikes. 
    • Experiential Retail. The company intends to invest in the "shopping experience" which will include (i) interactive spaces with rooms to use for parties, (ii) live product demonstrations put on by trained employees, and (iii) the freedom for employees to remove product from boxes to let kids play with the latest toys. And...wait for it...AUGMENTED REALITY. Boom. Toysrus.ar and Toysrus.ai here we come. 
  • Jurisdiction: E.D. of Virginia (Judge Phillips)
  • Capital Structure: see below     
  • Company Professionals:
    • Legal: Kirkland & Ellis LLP (Jamie Sprayragen, Anup Sathy, Edward Sassower, Chad Husnick, Joshua Sussberg, Robert Britton, Emily Geier) & (local) Kutak Rock LLP (Michael A. Condyles, 
      Peter J. Barrett, Jeremy S. Williams) & (Canadian counsel) Goodmans LLP
    • Legal to the Independent Board of Directors: Munger, Tolles & Olson LLP
    • Financial Advisor: Alvarez & Marsal North America LLC (Jeffrey Stegenga, Jonathan Goulding, Tom Behnke, Cari Turner, Jim Grover, Arjun Lal, Doug Lewandowski, Bobby Hoernschemeyer, Scott Safron, Kara Harmon, Nick Cherry, Adam Fialkowski)
    • Investment Banker: Lazard Freres & Co., LLC (David Kurtz)
    • Real Estate Consultant: A&G Realty Partners LLC (Andrew Graiser)
    • Claims Agent: Prime Clerk LLC (*click on company name above for free docket access)
    • Communications Consultant: Joele Frank Wilkinson Brimmer Katcher
  • Other Parties in Interest:
  • ABL/FILO DIP Admin Agent: JPMorgan Chase Bank NA
    • Legal: Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP (Marshall Heubner, Brian Resnick, Eli Vonnegut, Veerle Roovers) & (local) Hunton & Williams LLP (Tyler Brown, Henry (Toby) Long III, Justin Paget)
  • DIP Admin Agent (Toys DE Inc). NexBank SSB & Ad Hoc Group of B-4 Lenders (Angelo Gordon & Co LP; Franklin Mutual Advisors LLC, HPS Investment Partners LLC, Marathon Asset Management LP, Redwood Capital Management LLC, Roystone Capital Management LP, and Solus Alternative Asset Management LP)
    • Legal: Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz (Joshua Feltman, Emil Kleinhaus, Neil Chatani) & (local) McGuireWoods LLP (Dion Hayes, Sarah Bohm, Douglas Foley)
  • Ad Hoc Group of Taj Noteholders.
    • Legal: Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison LLP (Brian Hermann, Samuel Lovett, Kellie Cairns) & (local) Whiteford Taylor & Preston LLP (Christopher Jones, Jennifer Wuebker)
  • Steering Committee of B-2 and B-3 Lenders (American Money Management, Columbia Threadneedle Investments, Ellington Management Group LLC, First Trust Advisors L.P., MJX Asset Management LLC, Pacific Coast Bankers Bank, Par-Four Investment Management LLC, Sound Point Capital Management, Taconic Capital Advisors LP).
    • Legal: Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP (Michael Messersmith, D. Tyler Nurnberg, Sarah Gryll, Rosa Evergreen)
  • 12% ’21 Senior Secured Notes Indenture Trustee: Wilmington Trust, National Association.
    • Legal: Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP (Todd Meyers, David Posner, Gianfranco Finizio) & (local) ThompsonMcMullan PC (David Ruby, William Prince IV)
  • Bank of America NA
      • Legal: Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP (Paul Leake, Shana Elberg, George Howard) & (local) Troutman Sanders LLP (Jonathan Hauser)
    • Private Equity Sponsors: Bain Capital Private Equity LP, Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. L.P. ($KKR), and Vornado Realty Trust ($VNO)
  • Large Creditor: Mattel Inc.
    • Legal: Jones Day (Richard Wynne, Erin Brady, Aaron Gober-Sims) & (local) Michael Wilson PLC (Michael Wilson)
  • Large Creditor: LEGO Systems Inc.
    • Legal: Weil Gotshal & Manges LLP (Matthew Barr, Kelly DiBlasi) & (local) Walcott Rivers Gates (Cullen Speckhart)
  • Large Creditor: American Greetings Corporation.
    • Legal: Baker & Hosteler LLP (Benjamin Irwin, Eric Goodman)
  • Creditor: River Birch Capital
    • Legal: Andrews Kurth & Kenyon LLP (Paul Silverstein)
  • Creditor: Owl Creek Asset Management
    • Legal: Stroock Stroock & Lavan LLP (Samantha Martin)
  • TRU Trust 2016-TOYS, Commercial Mortgage Pass-Through Certificates, Series 2016-TOYS acting through Wells Fargo Bank NA
    • Legal: Dechert LLP (Allan Brilliant, Brian Greer, Stephen Wolpert, Humzah Soofi) & (local) Troutman Sanders LLP (Jonathan Hauser)
  • Trustee: Tru Taj DIP Notes (Wilmington Savings Fund Society FSB)
    • Legal: Porter Hedges LLP (Eric English) & (local) Spotts Fain PC (James Donaldson)
  • Committee of Unsecured Creditors (Mattel Inc., Evenflo Company Inc., Simon Property Group, Euler Hermes North America Insurance Co., Veritiv Operating Company, Huffy Corporation, KIMCO Realty, The Bank of New York Mellon, LEGO Systems Inc.)
First Day Declaration

First Day Declaration

First Day Declaration

First Day Declaration

Updated 10/5/17 11:40 am

New Chapter 11 Filing - Model Reorg Acquisition LLC (aka Perfumania Inc.)

Model Reorg Acquisition LLC (Perfumania Inc.)

  • 8/26/17 Recap: New York-based vertically-integrated specialty retailer (226 retail locations, mostly mall-based) and wholesale distributor of perfumes and fragrances (to the likes of Sears, Target, Walmart and Walgreens) filed for bankruptcy pursuant to a prepackaged plan of reorganization. The company is seeking approval of a $83,750,000 Wells Fargo DIP facility ("DIP") which will roll into an exit facility. What caused the filing? The overall retail bloodbath, naturally. Since 2015, the company has lost tens of millions of dollars, closed 105 retail locations, decreased the pace of brick-and-mortar openings and focused efforts - like the rest of the retail world - on e-commerce expansion. This way you could buy your one gallon bottle of CK One online rather than in a crappy mall stall. Awesome. The structure of this case is as follows: the DIP requires a completed case within 90 days to ensure that the reorganized (and newly private) company can take advantage of Q4 seasonality. The prepackaged plan leaves general unsecured creditors unimpaired and reinstates the unsecured notes. It also provides a $2/share recovery for shareholders who opt-in to a release of principals (notably, the shares were trading at $1.33/share at Friday's market close). The stockholder consideration will be paid via a $14.26mm equity infusion, which also serves as consideration for 100% of the reorganized equity. The transaction also preserves approximately $40mm of net operating losses and other tax attributes that will inure to the benefit of the owners. 
  • Jurisdiction: D. of Delaware (Judge Sontchi)
  • Capital Structure: $175mm senior credit facility ($18.78mm funded)(Wells Fargo Bank), $125.4mm unsecured debt +$54.8mm accrued and unpaid interest (3 different notes). Public equity ($PERF).     
  • Company Professionals:
    • Legal: Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP (J. Gregory Milmoe, Lisa Laukitis, Raquelle Kaye, Anthony Clark)
    • Financial Advisor: Ankura Consulting Group LLC (Stephen Marotta)
    • Investment Banker: Imperial Capital LLC (Robert Warshauer)
    • Real Estate Advisor: A&G Realty Partners LLC (Andrew Graiser)
    • Liquidators: Hilco Merchant Resources LLC & Gordon Brothers Retail Partners LLC
    • Claims Agent: Epiq Bankruptcy Solutions LLC (*click on company name above for free docket access)
  • Other Parties in Interest:
    • Agent to Senior Credit Facility: Wells Fargo Bank
      • Legal: Otterbourg P.C. (Daniel Fiorillo)
    • CIII Holdings LLC
      • Legal: Nastasi Partners PLLC (Ancela R. Nastasi, Marshall E. Tracht, Moshie Solomon, William S. Katchen, Andrew Gottesman) & (local) Morris Nichols Arsht & Tunnell LLP (Robert Dehney, Curtis Miller)

Updated 9/18/17

First Day Declaration filed 8/26/17

First Day Declaration filed 8/26/17

New Chapter 11 Filing - Takata Corporation

Takata Corporation

  • 6/25/17 Recap: The long-awaited chapter 11 (and Japanese Civil Rehabilitation Act) filing of the publicly-traded ($TKJP) airbag manufacturer is finally upon us after the Company endured a massive airbag recall (affecting 124mm automobiles that were deployed with non-desiccated PSAN Inflators, worldwide) and corresponding liability. The Company intends to consummate an agreement in principle with privately-held Key Safety Systems out of Sterling Heights Michigan for a sale of substantially all of the Company's assets for $1.588b. Use of proceeds include satisfying the requirements of a plea agreement with the US Department of Justice, paying administrative costs and expenses of the restructuring (cha-ching Weil, PwC, Lazard & Prime Clerk), and funding unsecured creditor recoveries. The Company has secured a $227mm revolving credit facility from Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation to fund the cases; per its press release, it has also negotiated with its Japanese original equipment manufacturers ("OEMs") for valuable accommodations and liquidity enhancements and continues to negotiate with OEMs elsewhere. Every car manufacturer under the sun is listed as an "undetermined" general unsecured creditor including the likes of Toyota, FordTesla, Fisker, Ferrari, and, of course, the majors. 
  • Jurisdiction: D. of Delaware
  • Company Professionals:
    • Legal: Weil Gotshal & Manges LLP (Marcia Goldstein, Ronit Berkovich, Matthew Goren, Jessica Diab, Lauren Tauro) & (local) Richards Layton & Finger PA (Mark Collins, Michael Merchant, Amanda Steele, Brett Haywood)
    • Financial Advisor: PriceWaterhouseCoopers LLP (Bill Fasel, Stephen Hammond)
    • Investment Banker: Lazard Freres & Co. LLC
    • Claims Agent: Prime Clerk LLC (*click on company name above for free docket access)
  • Other Parties in Interest:
    • Daimler Trucks North America LLC 
      • Legal: White & Case LLP (Thomas Lauria, Michael Shepard, Richard Graham)
    • General Motors Holdings LLC
      • Legal: O'Melveny & Meyers LLP (George Davis, Daniel Shamah, Andrew Sorkin, Gary Svirsky)
    • General Motors LLC
      • Legal: Honigman Miller Schwartz & Cohn LLP (Joseph Sgroi, Chauncey C. Mayfield II, Scott Kitai)
    • Key Safety Systems Inc.
      • Legal: Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP (Ron Meisler, Felicia Gerber Perlman, Christopher Dressel, Christine Okike, Esther Adzhiashvili)
    • Honda North America Inc.
      • Legal: Sidley Austin LLP (Michael Andolina, Jessica Knowles Boelter) & (local) Cole Schotz PC (Norman Pernick, J. Kate Stickles)
    • FCA US LLC
      • Legal: Sullivan & Cromwell LLP (Brian Glueckstein, Andrew Dietderich, Alexa Kranzley)
    • Ford Motor Company
      • Legal: McGuireWoods LLP (Mark Freedlander, Frank Guadagnino, John Thompson) & (local) Morris Nichols Arsht & Tunnell LLP (Derek Abbott)
    • Jaguar Land Rover North America LLC
      • Legal: Mayer Brown LLP (Richard Ziegler)
    • Subaru of America Inc.
      • Legal: Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP (Adam Rogoff, Anupama Yerramalli, Philip Bentley, David Braun)
    • Toyota Motor Corporation
      • Legal: Frost Brown Todd LLC (Robert Sartin, Patrica Kirkwood Burgess, Ronald Gold) & (local) Landis Rath & Cobb LLP (Adam Landis, Kimberly Brown, Travis Ferguson)
    • BMW Manufacturing Co LLC
      • Legal: Norton Rose Fulbright US LLP (David Rosenzweig, Michael Parker) & (local) Morris Nichols Arsht & Tunnell LLP (Derek Abbott)
    • Nissan Motor Corporation
      • Legal: Jones Day (Pedro Jimenez)
    • Mitsubishi Motors North America Inc.
      • Legal: Paul Weiss Rifkind Wharton & Garrison LLP (Daniel Youngblut, Kevin O'Neill)
    • Tesla Inc.
      • Legal: Irell & Manella LLP (Jeffrey Reisner, Michael Strub, Kerri Lyman) & (local) Reed Smith LLP (Kurt Gwynne, Emily Devan)
    • Volkswagen Group of America, Inc.
      • Legal: Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP (Timothy Graulich, Elliott Moskowitz, Darren Klein)
    • Volvo Group North America LLC
      • Legal: Baker Hostetler LLP (Eric Goodman) & (local) Morris Nichols
    • Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors
      • Legal: Milbank Tweed Hadley & McCloy LLP (Dennis Dunne, Tyson Lomazow, Abhilash Raval, Bradley Scott Friedman) & (local) Whiteford Taylor & Preston LLP (Christopher Samis, L. Katherine Good, Kevin Shaw)
    • Committee of Unsecured Tort Claimant Creditors
      • Legal: Pachulski Stang Ziehl & Jones LLP (Laura Davis Jones, James Stang)

Updated 7/11/17 6 pm (CT)

New Chapter 11 Filing - Katy Industries Inc.

Katy Industries Inc.

  • 5/14/17 Recap: St. Louis-based manufacturer, importer and distributor of commercial cleaning (brooms, brushes and mops) and consumer storage products filed for bankruptcy to effectuate a 363 sale to an affiliate of private equity sponsor Victory Park Capital Management. The company has been around forever, it seems, but recent acquisitions, failed integration, unrealized synergies, and operational pitfalls appear to have hit the company hard and strained liquidity. Hence, bankruptcy.
  • Jurisdiction: D. of Delaware
  • Capital Structure: $31.5mm debt (Encina Business Credit SPV LLC)    
  • Company Professionals:
    • Legal: DLA Piper LLP (John Lyons, Daniel Simon, Stuart Brown, Oksana Koltko Rosaluk)
    • Financial Advisor/CRO: SierraConstellation Partners LLC (Lawrence Perkins)
    • Investment Banker: Lincoln International Inc. (Alexander Stevenson)
    • Claims Agent: JND Legal Administration (*click on company name above for free docket access)
  • Other Parties in Interest:
    • Buyer: Jansan Acquisition LLC (Highview Capital LLC & VPCM)
      • Legal: Skadden Arps Meagher & Flom LLP (Lisa Laukitis)
    • Sponsor: Victory Park Capital Management
    • Encina Business Credit SPV LLC
      • Legal: Goldberg Kohn Ltd. (Jeremy Downs, Zachary Garrett) & (local) Reed Smith LLP (J. Cory Falgowski)
    • Successor Trustee: Wells Fargo Bank NA
      • Legal: Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP (Rachel Jaffe Mauceri)
    • Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors
      • Legal: Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP (Steven Kortanek, Andrew Flame, Patrick Jackson, Robert Malone)
      • Financial Advisor: Emerald Capital Advisors (John Madden)

Updated 7/12/17 

New Chapter 11 Filing - Ciber Inc.

Ciber Inc.

  • 4/10/17 Recap: Once publicly-traded Colorado-based IT staffing and consulting services company filed for bankruptcy to pursue a sale of its business to CapGemini S.A., as stalking horse bidder, for at least $50mm plus the assumption of certain liabilities. The sale is subject to a postpetition marketing process. Ciber lists Microsoft and Oracle as major corporate partners; it sells and supports both companies' product offerings. Ciber seems like the quintessential go-big-or-go-home kind of company. It fueled growth over the years with over 60 acquisitions at a cost of more than $1b, never fully integrating the new businesses. This failure to integrate led to some AWESOME results: like the time the company paid $14mm to European consultants for NEGATIVE PERFORMANCE. And we thought Wells Fargo had a monopoly on stupid bonus-based behavior. Speaking of Wells Fargo, it is the lender here and the straw that broke the camel's back was the company's inability to adhere to its Fixed Coverage Charge ratio, triggering a default under its asset-based loan. Now Wells Fargo is providing the DIP facility of $41mm to fund the cases which, by our simple mathematical calculations, amounts to $4.1mm per bankruptcy lawyer who has made a notice of appearance on behalf of the debtors already (see below).
  • Jurisdiction: D. of Delaware
  • Capital Structure: $60mm ABL (Wells Fargo Bank NA)     
  • Company Professionals:
    • Legal: Morrison & Foerster LLP (Brett Miller, Dennis Jenkins, Daniel Harris, Benjamin Butterfield, Steve Rappoport, Todd Goren) & (local) Polsinelli PC (Christopher Ward, Justin Edelson, Jarrett Vine)
    • Financial Advisor/CRO: Alvarez & Marsal LLC (Jonathan Goulding, Matt Covington, Glenn Gilmour)
    • Investment Banker: Houlihan Lokey Capital Inc. (Adam Dunayer, Michael Boone)
    • Claims Agent: Prime Clerk LLC (*click on company name above for free docket access)
  • Other Parties in Interest:
    • Prepetition & DIP Lender: Wells Fargo Bank NA
      • Legal: Goldberg Kohn Ltd. (Jeremy Downs, Jacob Marshall)
    • Stalking Horse Bidder: CapGemini SA
      • Legal: Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP (Paul Leake, Mark McDermott, Raquelle Kaye)
    • Actual Buyer: HTC Global Ventures LLC
      • Legal: Plunkett Cooney PC (Scott Lites, David Lerner)
    • Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors
      • Legal: Perkins Coie LLP (John Penn, Schuyler Carroll, Tina Moos) & (local) Shaw Fishman Glantz & Towbin LLC (Thomas Horan)
      • Financial Advisor: BDO Consulting (David Berliner)
    • Ad Hoc Group of Non-Insider Employees
      • Legal: Blank Rome LLP (Josef Mintz, John Lucian)

Updated 5/21/17 

  

New Chapter 11 Filing - Westinghouse Electric Company LLC

Westinghouse Electric Company LLC

  • 3/29/17 Recap: File this under the most heavily leaked/discussed bankruptcy filing of all time: the Japanese government seemed to make an announcement about the proposed filing every hour. So...Pennsylvania-based nuclear power company filed for bankruptcy (30 debtors in total) after its parent, Toshiba, took a uuuuuuuuuge $6b+ write-down due to delayed and above-budget construction of plants in Georgia and South Carolina. The company secured a $800mm commitment for a DIP facility to fund the cases after a competitive DIP process with powerhouses like Goldman Sachs, Highbridge and Silver Point duking it out with Apollo. We've already covered this company a lot in previous weeks so suffice it to say that the upshot of this filing is that it will lead many to question the viability of nuclear as an alternative power source.
  • Jurisdiction: SD of New York 
  • Company Professionals:
    • Primary Legal: Weil (Gary Holtzer, Garrett Fail, Robert Lemons, David Griffiths, Charles Persons, David Cohen)
    • Legal for Toshiba Nuclear Energy Holdings (UK) Limited: Togut Segal & Segal LLP (Albert Togut, Brian Moore, Kyle Ortiz)
    • Financial Advisor: AlixPartners LLC (Lisa Donahue)
    • Investment Banker: PJT Partners Inc. (Timothy Coleman, John Singh, Mark Buschmann, Harold Kim)
    • Claims Agent: KCC (*click on company name for docket)
  • Other Parties in Interest:
    • Toshiba Corporation
      • Legal: Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP (Van Durrer, Paul Leake, Annie Li) 
    • Prepetition Agent:
      • Legal: Latham & Watkins LLP (Zulfiqar Bokhari) 
    • Proposed DIP Lenders: Apollo Investment Corporation, AP WEC Debt Holdings LLC, Midcap Financial Trust, Amundi Absolute Return Apollo Fund PLC, Ivy Apollo Strategic Income Fund, Ivy Apollo Multi Asset Income Fund
      • Legal: Paul Weiss Rifkand Wharton & Garrison LLP (Jeffrey Saferstein, Claudia Tobler, Kevin O'Neill) 
    • Proposed DIP Agent: Citibank NA
      • Legal: Shearman & Sterling LLP (Fredric Sosnick, Ned Schodek) 
    • Competing (but losing) DIP Providers: Goldman Sachs Bank USA, HPS Investment Partners LLC, Silver Point Finance LLC
    • Georgia Power Company, Oglethorpe Power Corporation, Municipal Electric Authority of Georgia and City of Dalton Georgia
      • Legal: Jones Day (Gregory Gordon, Dan Prieto, Amanda Rush, Anna Kordas, Jeffrey Ellman)
    • Municipal Electric Authority of Georgia
      • Legal: Alston & Bird LLP (Dennis Connolly)
    • South Carolina Electric & Gas Company and South Carolina Public Service Authority
      • Legal: Reed Smith LLP (Paul Singer, Derek Baker, Tarek Abdalla)
    • Oglethorpe Power Corporation (An Electric Membership Corporation)
      • Legal: Dechert LLP (Michael Sage, Stephen Wolpert) & Parker Hudson Rainer & Dobbs LLP (C. Edward Dobbs)
    • Exelon Generation Company LLC
      • Legal: Ballard Spahr LLP (Matthew Summers)
    • Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors
      • Legal: Proskauer Rose LLP (Martin Bienenstock, Timothy Karcher, Vincent Indelicato)
      • Financial Advisor: Alvarez & Marsal LLC

Updated 5/31/17