Chapter 15 Headlines

Virgin Atlantic Airways Ltd is seeking protection from creditors in the United States under Chapter 15 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code, which allows a foreign debtor to shield assets in this country, according to a court filing on Tuesday, Reuters reported. Virgin Atlantic’s filing in U.S.

U.K. discount retailer Matalan will file for Chapter 15 court protection in the U.S. on Wednesday as part of broader measures to buttress its balance sheet in the aftermath of pandemic-inflicted closures, Bloomberg News reported. The company will seek “certain interim relief” under Chapter 15 and recognition for its debt restructuring in the U.K., according to a statement Tuesday. Chapter 15 of U.S. bankruptcy law shields foreign companies from lawsuits by U.S. creditors while they reorganize in another country. The retailer used a U.K. court procedure known as a scheme of arrangement.

Cirque du Soleil and its secured creditors are close to reaching a agreement on a second stalking horse bid for the financially strapped entertainment group, after lenders opposed a deal with shareholders including TPG Capital and Fosun International, a Canadian court heard today, Reuters reported. Canada’s once high-flying Cirque has received protection from creditors as it restructures after the COVID-19 pandemic forced it to cancel shows and lay off artists. The Montreal-based entertainment company filed for bankruptcy in late June.

DavidsTea is seeking court protection from creditors so it can continue operating while it restructures and plans to close a significant number of its stores, the Globe and Mail reported. The Montreal-based company said today that it will seek an order in Quebec Superior Court to allow it to restructure under the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act. It also plans to seek similar orders for its U.S. subsidiary under chapter 15 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code.

African finance ministers started talks with private creditors to find a way to temporarily suspend debt payments without triggering defaults, Bloomberg News reported. At least a dozen African finance ministers spoke during the hour-and-half virtual meeting with more than 100 creditors on Monday, according to a representative of private creditors who attended the gathering.

A panel of bankers will rule on Thursday whether some investors in Thomas Cook’s credit are due a payout under bankruptcy rules, a decision that could smooth a rescue of the world’s oldest travel company, Reuters reported. The British firm, which employs 21,000 people across 16 countries, agreed the key terms of a rescue deal with Chinese shareholder Fosun (1992.HK) last month. But it must be approved by creditors next week. Holders of Credit Default Swaps (CDS), instruments used to insure exposure to credit, are digging in for a payout for their bets against the company.

Thomas Cook Group Plc has filed for Chapter 15 court protection in the U.S. as part of a broader debt restructuring for the U.K. travel agent, Bloomberg News reported. The company’s Chapter 15 petition was filed in the Southern District of New York, court papers dated Sept. 16 show. Law firm Latham & Watkins is representing the company, according to the documents. Chapter 15 of U.S. bankruptcy law shields foreign companies from lawsuits by U.S. creditors while they reorganize in another country. The filing may also trigger the payout of default insurance on Thomas Cook debt.

Permanent TSB (PTSB) must shift a further €550 million in problem loans before it will meet its own targets – and get a hearing from regulators on lifting a ban on paying dividends, The Irish Times reported. The bank disclosed in its interim results, published on Thursday, that it has €1.7 billion of NPLs on its balance sheet, equivalent to 10 per cent of its loan book, having reduced the ratio from an eye-watering 28 per cent at the start of 2018. Last year, it sold €3.4 billion in non-performing mortgages in the face of considerable political opposition.

Billionaire Beny Steinmetz’s mining company sought bankruptcy protection in the U.S., two months after losing a $2 billion arbitration award to Brazilian mining giant Vale SA, Bloomberg News reported. The court filing by BSG Resources Ltd. on Monday could stymie Vale’s effort to enforce the award, which stems from an ill-fated joint venture with BSGR at the Simandou iron ore mine in Guinea. The government stripped their venture of its rights to Simandou following a probe that found licenses were obtained through corruption. BSGR lists its only U.S.

Offshore driller Ocean Rig UDW Inc is preparing to explore a sale amid pressure from some of its largest shareholders to review its strategic alternatives, according to three people familiar with the matter. The move will be a key test of Ocean Rig’s value after it emerged from Chapter 15 bankruptcy in September, Reuters reported. Its business has suffered as low oil prices have made offshore drilling less economically attractive and pushed more oil exploration onshore.