Energy, Retail Dominate Restructuring
Predictions in the fall that the energy and healthcare industries would be most active for out-of-court restructurings in the fourth quarter were only about half correct. Restructuring attorneys and advisers correctly predicted that oil, gas and coal related companies would be among the most active in the fourth quarter, but they missed on the healthcare industry. The list of energy company out-of-court restructurings seemed to grow with each month. Among the most significant restructurings were coal producer Armstrong Energy Inc., Anton Oilfield Services Group and EP Energy Corp.
However, not many significant healthcare companies announced new restructurings. One significant deal involved Humanigen Inc., the former KaloBios Pharmaceutical Inc.
A surprise to some advisers might be the number of retailers choosing out-of-court restructurings instead of Chapter 11 filings. Prior to the fourth quarter, advisers were saying it was more likely that retailers would file bankruptcy instead of restructure out of court because it was easier to restructure in court. But the list of retailers choosing out-of-court restructurings in the fourth quarter includes Charlotte Russe, 99 Cent Only Stores LLC, Bon-Ton Stores Inc., GNC Holdings Inc. and thrift store operator Evergreen AcqCo 1 LP.
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