North America

Offshore drilling rig contractor Seadrill said on Monday it has proposed to creditors to turn over its stakes in oil services firms Archer and Seadrill Seabras to redeem its outstanding secured notes, Reuters reported. The company controlled by Norwegian-born billionaire John Fredriksen has been in talks with creditors since the end of last year over new debt restructuring. Seadrill said it was approached by a group of noteholders in May about a potential deal, and it responded on Aug.

Read more

Fitch Ratings downgraded Offshore Drilling Holding, S.A.'s (ODH) Long-Term Foreign- and Local-Currency Issuer Default Ratings (IDRs) to 'C' from 'CC,’ Fitch Ratings reported. Fitch also downgraded the company's USD950 million senior secured notes due Sept. 20, 2020 to 'C'/'RR4' from 'CC'/'RR4'. The downgrade reflects ODH's ongoing negotiation with its bondholders' representatives regarding a potential restructuring of the company's capital structure, as disclosed on Aug. 11, 2020.

Read more

Offshore drilling rig contractor Seadrill’s ongoing attempt to restructure its massive debt could leave current shareholders with minimal or no ownership at all, the Oslo-listed company warned on Tuesday, Reuters reported. Demand for exploration and drilling has fallen further during the COVID-19 pandemic as oil firms seek to preserve cash, idling more rigs and leading to further overcapacity in the industry. Seadrill, controlled by Norwegian-born tycoon John Fredriksen, said it has failed to convince its 43 lenders to adjust the terms of its $5.7 billion bank debt.

Read more

Fosun International Ltd. is poised to lose its 20% stake in Cirque du Soleil Entertainment Group, the latest in a series of failed overseas deals for the Shanghai-based insurance, health care and tourism conglomerate, Bloomberg News reported. A consortium of Montreal-based Cirque du Soleil creditors is set to take control of the struggling circus operator, people familiar with the matter said. The company filed for bankruptcy protection in June as the Covid-19 pandemic slammed its distinctive global chain of musical, acrobatic shows.

Read more

Offshore oil servicers are going bust at the fastest pace in three years as explorers spurn high-cost drilling to deal with a worldwide slump in commodity prices, Bloomberg News reported. The debacle, triggered by the pandemic-driven drop in oil prices, has already claimed some of the biggest companies that supply rigs, transportation and other support services to deep-water drillers. Noble Corp. and Diamond Offshore Drilling Inc. have filed for Chapter 11 since the start of the pandemic-driven oil downturn, while Valaris Plc filed for bankruptcy Wednesday. Firms including Transocean Ltd.

Read more

The collapse of a Mexican lender is spurring concern about risks for the banking system just as the country sinks into its deepest recession in almost a century under the watch of a financial regulator that’s been hobbled by austerity, Bloomberg News reported. Banco Famsa will need a bailout of almost $1 billion to make depositors whole. Its failure is fueling worries among former officials that the watchdog known as the CNBV could miss warning signs at other lenders after a wave of resignations followed President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s drive to cut costs.

Read more

Quebec’s pension fund said it spent $75 million in February to double its stake in Cirque du Soleil Entertainment, an investment it was forced to write off in June when the company filed for bankruptcy protection, Bloomberg News reported. Caisse de Depot et Placement du Quebec’s decision to buy an additional 10% of the live performance company from founder Guy Laliberte came after months of discussions with shareholders, Caisse Chief Executive Officer Charles Emond said Monday. The fund spent $71 million for its initial 10% stake in 2015, he told a panel of lawmakers in Quebec City.

Read more

Credit rating agency S&P Global Ratings said on Wednesday it has downgraded Belize’s foreign currency ratings to SD from CC/C after the Central American country announced details of a debt restructuring plan this week, Reuters reported. Belize in July proposed to creditors that it would capitalize some scheduled payments on its $526 million Eurobond maturing in 2034 because it could not afford to meet them as it battled with the effects of the coronavirus pandemic.

Read more

Panama’s Copa Airlines on Wednesday reported that it earned almost no income between April and June, with revenue falling 98% as coronavirus-related measures virtually shuttered the Panama City airport that serves as its home base, Reuters reported. Panama’s tough anti-coronavirus measures, including a travel ban that will go at least through August, has also become a radical test of Copa’s resilience. In normal times, Copa is considered Latin America’s most financially successful airline, known for steady profits, low debt and a strong cash position.

Read more

Even as provinces move forward with phased reopening plans, 14% of Canadian small businesses are at risk of permanently closing, according to a new report, Bloomberg News reported. About one in seven small- and medium-sized companies surveyed at the end of June by the Canadian Federation of Independent Business said they are at least somewhat considering bankruptcy or winding down operations as a result of Covid-19. That would represent about 158,000 businesses in addition to the ones that have already closed, CFIB said.

Read more