Elpida's Bondholders Open New Front In Fight Over Micron Deal

Frustrated by Japanese chipmaker Elpida Memory Inc's plan to sell itself out of bankruptcy in Tokyo for a perceived pittance, the company's U.S. bondholders are bringing the fight back home, turning to a Delaware court in hopes of wresting control of the case, Reuters reported. Holders of some of Elpida's $5.6 billion in bonds will argue at a hearing on Monday in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Wilmington, Del., that Elpida's plan to sell itself to U.S. rival Micron Technology Inc for about $2.5 billion drastically undervalues the company. Elpida in March had filed for so-called Chapter 15 protection in the Delaware court, a common move for companies restructuring outside of the United States. Chapter 15 allows U.S. courts to recognize a foreign bankruptcy as the main proceeding and block creditors from seizing the company's American assets. But in court papers filed ahead of Monday's hearing, Elpida's bondholders made the unusual demand that Judge Christopher Sontchi take steps to protect their interests in Elpida's U.S. assets and declare that bondholders have the right to force Elpida's American subsidiary into bankruptcy in the United States. Elpida, the last of Japan's dynamic random access memory, or DRAM, chipmakers, was driven into bankruptcy in Tokyo District Court by falling chip sales and foreign competition. In a bid to raise money to repay creditors, it has agreed to sell its business to Boise, Idaho-based Micron for $750 million in cash and $1.75 billion in deferred payments. Read more.