Chapter 15 Headlines

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.
Brazil’s Odebrecht Oil & Gas filed for bankruptcy protection in the U.S. Friday to help implement a previously announced multibillion-dollar debt restructuring, The Wall Street Journal reported. Odebrecht Oil & Gas, an arm of engineering conglomerate Odebrecht SA, sought chapter 15 protection, the section of the bankruptcy code that deals with international insolvencies, in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in New York. Large foreign companies, particularly those with U.S. operations or dollar-denominated debt, often file for bankruptcy in the U.S.
Japanese auto supplier Takata Corp filed for U.S. bankruptcy protection on Wednesday in an effort to pause lawsuits against the company over faulty air bag inflators - more than a month after its U.S. unit filed for bankruptcy in the same court, the International New York Times reported on a Reuters story. In its filing with the U.S.
International offshore driller Ocean RIG UDW Inc filed for Chapter 15 bankruptcy protection in a U.S. court late Monday, hit by cancellations as major oil producing customers withdrew from deep water projects amid falling oil prices, Reuters reported. The Cayman Islands holding company, which spent heavily on new drill ships earlier in the decade, said lower oil prices will continue to weigh on client demand during 2017. More than half of its drilling units are currently inactive. In a filing with the U.S.
The Hanjin Shipping Company filed for bankruptcy in South Korea on Aug. 31, and sought recognition of that bankruptcy in the United States under Chapter 15 of the bankruptcy code, which governs such matters. In the meantime, there has been apparent chaos as ships have been milling about off shore, stranding cargo and crew and even a filmmaker in a kind of insolvency limbo, the International New York Times DealBook blog reported. Perhaps what is most surprising about this entire event is the apparent lack of planning that went into this bankruptcy case.