Masonite May Face Bankruptcy Unless Lenders Grant Loan Reprieve

Masonite International Corp., taken over by Kohlberg, Kravis, Roberts & Co. three years ago, may file for bankruptcy unless the company's lenders agree to ease the terms of its bank loans, Bloomberg reported today. The door and fiberboard maker, which KKR bought for $1.9 billion, is negotiating with a group led by Scotia Capital for a reprieve of at least 30 days in exchange for higher interest payment and fees. Masonite, based near Toronto, and lenders holding $1.5 billion of the debt have a call scheduled for 11 a.m. Eastern time today. In the second quarter, Masonite breached loan covenants prohibiting the company from incurring debt seven times greater than its earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization, according to a filing. The ratio surged to 8.25 times as of June 30 after the earnings figure declined 44 percent to $56 million, the filing said. In September, Masonite arranged a bank-loan forbearance agreement that expired Nov. 13. Read more.