Prepackaged Bankruptcy: Is It Right for Your Company?
Within our Corporate Restructuring and Bankruptcy Group is a subset of lawyers that focuses on representing investors in troubled companies. The group represents funds and investors on a national and international scope and concentrates in trading claims in troubled enterprises. The claims trading team is widely regarded as among the finest in representing investment banks, commercial banks and domestic and international hedge funds in their purchases and sales of distressed investments, such as bank claims, trade claims and swap claims in addition to privately traded securities. Partners in the group are leading scholars on the law of trading claims and taking control of corporations in chapter 11, and have represented distressed investors in this area for decades. Our partners have authored commentaries on the Loan Syndications and Trading Association’s standard documentation for the purchase of bank claims, are active members of the LSTA and the Loan Market Association (LMA) and regularly speak at numerous forums and conferences involving distressed debt and related issues. Our distressed investing group focuses on our clients’ needs in connection with their investments in distressed credits and investments worldwide. In the aggregate, we are involved in more than 3,000 transactions and more than a billion dollars of distressed debt transactions each year. In addition to facilitating the trading of the claims against distressed companies, our lawyers advise individuals and institutions contemplating investments in the distressed arena. In this regard, our lawyers provide our clients with detailed analyses and critiques of indentures, inter-creditor agreements, bank credit agreement and security documents, and provide practical advice as to how to maximize leverage under any given distressed or reorganization scenario. Whether they are looking to take control of a company through a debt-to-equity conversion or seeking to enforce their rights on an unpaid coupon, the institutions, individuals, hedge funds and creditor groups that regularly employ us to analyze a particular credit find that we have an in-depth knowledge and expertise that are second to none. The team gives expert advice on the myriad of issues surrounding senior and subordinated debt, relative priorities and rights, capital structure review, covenant analysis, enforcement of rights and the ‘no-action’ clause, and replacing and compelling indenture trustees to take action upon events of default. The counsel we provide our clients in connection with these distressed investments often results in our continuing representation of the client throughout a bankruptcy case or restructuring of the purchased claim or security. Representative Transactions Although many of Kramer Levin’s engagements in this sector are on a confidential basis, certain recent credits on which the firm has provided extensive advice to clients include, among many others, the Bernard Madoff SIPA liquidation, MF Global, Lehman Brothers, Alerican Airlines, Glitnir Banki (Iceland), Kaupthing Banki (Iceland), Nortel, Tribune, Ford, TI Fluid Systems, Lee Enterprises, Harrah's, Readers Digest, Idearc, Young Broadcasting, Lightsquared and Visteon.