Brazil’s Oi Seeks Creditor Protection Ahead of Debt Payments

Oi SA, the distressed Brazilian telecom operator, asked a court to shield it from creditors ahead of a major debt payment, in what may lead to a second bankruptcy protection process in seven years, Bloomberg News reported. The company, which underwent one of the largest corporate restructurings in Brazil’s history — that began in 2016 and ended just last year — said it needs urgent help to fend off creditors, according to a filing to a Rio de Janeiro court seen by Bloomberg News. The company confirmed the request for a preliminary injunction on Thursday. Oi said it currently has about 29 billion reais ($5.7 billion) of debt, with half denominated in dollars. With 600 million reais coming due on Feb. 5, the company said recent negotiations with bondholders have failed to yield an agreement and therefore it needs protection to prevent an acceleration of its liabilities. Read more.