CHICAGO Creditors of Abengoa Bioenergy US
Holding, a unit of Spanish renewable energy company Abengoa SA
, have reached an agreement over the distribution of
asset sale proceeds, removing a key hurdle for the company to
Abengoa Bioenergy was one of dozens of U.S. Abengoa
subsidiaries that filed for U.S. bankruptcy protection last year
while the Seville-based parent worked out a high-stakes plan to
cut $10 billion of debt and avoid its own bankruptcy in Spain.
The bioenergy company sold ethanol plants last year and
raised roughly $140 million in cash, which was claimed by
lenders of the Abengoa parent in Spain as well as the unit’s
unsecured creditors and suppliers in the United States.
Under a deal reached this week, Abengoa’s big bank lenders
such as Santander will receive their pro rata share of
$32.5 million of cash from the asset sale proceeds, while the
rest will be distributed among the other creditors.
The deal increases the estimated recovery for U.S. unsecured
creditors and suppliers to around 30 cents on the dollar, versus
the penny they were set to receive before the agreement, and
avoids lengthy litigation.
“This is a fair deal for all involved, and the product of
lengthy negotiations,” said lawyer Christopher Donoho of Hogan
Lovells, which represented the unsecured creditors.
A hearing to approve Abengoa Bioenergy’s reorganization
plan, which would allow it to begin seeking creditor votes for
its plan to exit bankruptcy, is scheduled in U.S. Bankruptcy
Court in St. Louis on Feb. 22.
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