Excel Maritime Files for Bankruptcy After Voting Extended
By Erik Larson & Joe Schneider - Jul 1, 2013 8:16 PM ET
Excel Maritime Carriers Ltd. (EXMCF), the Athens-based operator of 38 dry-bulk vessels, filed for bankruptcy protection in the U.S. after extending a voting deadline on a reorganization plan with senior lenders.
Excel listed assets of $2.7 billion and debt of $1 billion in a Chapter 11 petition filed yesterday in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in White Plains, New York.
A group of senior lenders owed $771 million — backed by almost all the shipping company’s assets — signed off on a restructuring plan that calls for $50 million in new cash and the release of $30 million more that was restricted, the company said in a statement on June 11. Excel said yesterday in a statement that a voting deadline on the plan was extended to 5 p.m. New York time.
“Like other companies in our industry, Excel Maritime has been impacted by macro-economic conditions that have led to volatility and overall declines in charter rates,” Excel Chairman Gabriel Panayotides said in the June 11 statement.
Excel’s creditors on June 10 began voting on the prepackaged Chapter 11 reorganization plan that called for the secured lenders to take ownership, the company said a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.
“Because the company’s senior secured lenders’ claims are vastly under water, the lenders are entitled to receive almost all of the value of the reorganized company,” Excel said in the filing. Under the deal, the maturity of the company’s senior secured facility would be extended through 2018.
Excel also owes $150 million on 1.875 percent unsecured convertible notes, the company said. Holders of the notes and other unsecured creditors, with claims totaling $163 million, will get a 3 percent recovery, according to the filing. Their recovery will come from $5 million held by Excel’s non-bankrupt joint-venture affiliate named Christine Shipco LLC, Excel said.
The company said its total enterprise value is estimated to be from $575 million to $625 million.
The case is In re Excel Maritime Carriers Ltd. 13-23060. U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Southern District of New York (White Plains).
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