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High Court throws out Japanese bank’s bid to block Solid Energy debt restructure

Chief High Court judge Helen Winkelmann has thrown out a Japanese bank’s bid to stop Solid Energy’s restructuring deal the bank says shouldn’t be allowed under part 14 of the Companies Act.

The Ministry of Justice has not yet released the judgment to the media, however Solid Energy has confirmed the decision has been made it its favour.

Last month, the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ (BTMU) said at the High Court at Auckland it doesn’t want low-value shares of Solid Energy in exchange for writing off part of the state-owned company’s debt.

The deal, reached under part 14 of the Companies Act, calls for the banks, including BTMU, to retire a portion of Solid Energy’s debt in exchange for equity in the company. Collectively, Solid Energy would transform $75 million of its $400 million in debt into redeemable preference shares.

BTMU would have had to write off $16.3 million of its $80 million loan under the deal, which was agreed on by the Crown, Solid Energy and its other creditors a couple of months ago.

Other lenders include ANZ, Bank of New Zealand, Commonwealth Bank of Australia’s New Zealand branch, Westpac New Zealand and TSB Bank.

Comments and questions

Everyone says liquidate it but - they (including Crown Monitoring Unit) must avoid that due to this section of the Companies Act

258A Duty to report suspected offences
(1) A liquidator of a company who considers that an offence that is
material to the liquidation has been committed by the company
or any director of the company against this Act or any of the
following Acts must report that fact to the Registrar:
(a) the Crimes Act 1961:
(b) the Securities Act 1978:
(c) the Securities Markets Act 1988:
(d) the Financial Reporting Act 1993:
(e) the Takeovers Act 1993:
(f) the Insurance (Prudential Supervision) Act 2010.