Restructuring and insolvency

The success of your organisation is inevitably exposed to turbulent economic and political conditions, and the world is currently an unpredictable place to be.

Even without those external forces, every business goes through challenging times at some point depending on its stage of growth. As a business leader, your organisation going through financial or operational difficulties can be incredibly stressful.

We work closely with directors and leadership teams to preserve the value in your organisation and where possible return operations to health and success. Should that not be possible, and all options have been explored, our insolvency specialists quickly and pragmatically work to secure the best outcome for all.

In the course of business, you may sometimes find yourself dealing with a business partner with monies owed to you facing a distressed situation. Or if you are a lender or creditor who suddenly finds yourself in a situation where payments owed to you have been defaulted, our team has deep experience to guide you through the situation to devise a strategy which best protects your interests.

Part of a team of over 150 disputes specialists globally across 18 offices, our team is well-placed to help where your insolvency or restructuring has assets held cross-border.

We were recently international and lead counsel to Bumi Resources, one of the fastest growing energy and mining companies in Asia and the world, in a complex debt restructuring that involved local law advice in Singapore, Indonesia, the US as well as English law jurisdictions. Our global team was made up of restructuring and corporate law specialists, and we successfully restructured Bumi Resources’ US$4.5 billion of financial debts including three US dollar denominated bond issues, six bank syndicated loans, and loans from two Chinese entities into approximately US$2.3 billion of new debt, comprising senior loans and notes, mandatory convertible bonds and contingent value rights, in addition to new Bumi equity issued pursuant to a rights offering for the remainder of the amount. This was awarded Finance Deal of the Year: Insolvency and Restructuring at The Asian Legal Awards 2018.

We are proud of our role in creating and defending success at every stage of the business life cycle and do this in and out of court. Clients include multi-national companies, financial institutions, individual directors, trustees and investors as well as advisors and insolvency administrators.

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16 January 2018 - In The Press

Press release: Withers advises on Southeast Asia’s largest debt restructuring deal for 2017


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Recognition

Leading firm for banking litigation: investment and retail

Leading firm for commercial litigation

Legal 500 UK 2019: Leading firm for commercial litigation

Legal 500 Asia 2019: Leading firm for restructuring and insolvency

Legal 500 UK 2019: Leading firm for banking litigation: investment and retail

Manage your dispute, in private

Very few people want to drag their companies, families and personal lives though the courts or the media.

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Meet the team

How the team can help

Track record

US$4.5billion debt restructuring for one of the largest coal exporters in the world

Acting as lead counsel to PT Bumi Resources Tbk in one of the largest and most complex debt restructurings in SE Asia, we navigated complex multilateral negotiations with key creditors and their counsels, including the China Development Bank (CDB), China Investment Corporation (CIC). Providing global advice across Singapore, Indonesia, Mauritius, Seychelles, Cayman Islands, the US and UK, we successfully negotiated the exchange of US$4.5 billion of international loans and bonds for new senior loans and bonds, mandatory convertible bonds (MCBs) and contingent value rights (CVRs) as well as new equity. This has been widely recognised as one of the largest deals of the year, winning various Asian legal awards.

High profile restructuring matter valued at over US$2 billion

We represented creditors, including an international bank and global engineering company, in a high profile restructuring matter valued at over US$2 billion involving a multinational environmental solutions public company based in Singapore.

Representing a debtor in a landmark case in Asia

Our restructuring and insolvency team acted for a debtor in a landmark case where the court declared that a liquidator of the insolvent creditor company could not continue an action which was commenced by the judicial manager of the company at the time the company was in judicial management.

Enforcement of securities in banks

We have advised various banks on enforcement of securities including mortgagees’ sales and specialist advice on disputes relating to real estate and financing transactions, standstill arrangements, restructuring of debts owing to multiple lenders and the taking of securities on a collective basis.

US$250million restructuring of debt for a media business

We advised PT Visi Media Asia Tbk ("VIVA"), a listed company in Indonesia operating in the media industry, on the restructuring of approximately US$250 million of their debt under a credit agreement. The restructuring involved a complex inter-creditor agreement.

Restructuring for one of the oldest plantation companies in Indonesia

We acted for PT Bakrie Sumatera Plantations Tbk., one of the oldest plantation companies in Indonesia, which is listed on the Jakarta stock exchange, in the restructuring of its syndicated bank loan and equity linked notes.

Racing Point Limited

We advised our client on a variety of contentious matters related to the acquisition of the Force India Formula One team (FIFOT), including questions around the insolvent administration of FIFOT. Our ability to work quickly and efficiently was pivotal to the success of this case and the winning bid for FIFOT from the client.

A rare rescue and exit from administration

We acted for the US parent (Troika Media Group, Inc.) of a well-known UK marketing agency, Mission Media Limited, and its immediate parent company, Mission Media Holdings Limited. Following a dispute between the management of the UK and US companies, the UK companies were placed into administration by their director. Following swift and effective legal advice and strategic guidance, both companies were rescued and exited from administration within 21 days through the provision of emergency funding and working capital to the satisfaction of the administrators and the High Court. This result is a very rare occurrence, as only in a handful of cases has the primary purpose of an administration been achieved.

Diesel London Limited

Representing Diesel, the well-known Italian fashion brand, in the recovery of outstanding amounts owed to it by House of Fraser and a retention of title claim for stock supplied to House of Fraser, in the context of a CVA and subsequent administration and business sale.

Unicredit SpA

Our client, the well-known Italian bank, Unicredit SpA, sought enforcement of an Italian costs order obtained in complex Italian court proceedings against a UK company, Server Plus Limited (‘Server Plus’). We successfully obtained a winding up order against Server Plus, despite its attempts to claim that the liquidation proceedings were a vexatious attempt to bring an end to ongoing Italian proceedings Server Plus had brought against our client and a State third party. Ultimately, Server Plus did not have the funds to meet the debt owed to our client, and is now in liquidation.

Restoring a dissolved company into liquidation to investigate assets

Restoring a dissolved company into liquidation to investigate assets<br /> Representing the creditor of a BVI company, we successfully applied for a dissolved BVI company to be restored back into liquidation to enable a liquidator to investigate the whereabouts of the BVI company's assets, believed to be located in Switzerland and Russia. The purpose was to satisfy our client's claims against the company that were unsatisfied at the time the company was originally liquidated and dissolved. This matter has involved cross-border cooperation with practitioners based in Russia, Switzerland, the BVI and the Netherlands. <br />

Appointment of a BVI receiver over shares in BVI and Russian company

We successfully applied for the appointment of a BVI Receiver over the shares in and assets of a BVI company, including shares in a Russian company which owns valuable real estate in Moscow. Working with external Russian Counsel based in Moscow, the Receiver was able to protect the Russian real estate to ensure that a BVI Freezing Order would not be breached and a BVI Claim would not go unsatisfied.

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