Overview

Nearly every business will at some point encounter an insolvency or restructuring issue, whether as a lender, an investor or a contractual party, or in a situation involving its own assets. Our attorneys approach each situation with an understanding of the motivations and goals of all involved, and craft solutions that make sense for business. We work with a broad range of stakeholders, including lenders, debtors, shareholders, indentured trustees and asset acquirers.

The right solution

Our goal is to find the solution that best serves our clients, with an eye toward cost and achievable outcomes. We bring the parties to the table quickly to drive a process, build consensus, if possible, and get the best outcome available under the circumstances.

This is possible because we know both the law and the players. After working for decades with the lenders, judges, trustees and other professionals who populate this space, we can anticipate what they'll need to make a deal. They know they can count on us to offer smart, business-viable solutions. They also know that if negotiations fail, we will not hesitate to go to court and fight vigorously for our clients.

At home in middle-market and mega-deal spaces

Katten has long been known for working with middle-market companies and the financial institutions that support them. In recent years, we have added groups of lawyers who have handled some of the largest and most complex Chapter 11 proceedings ever conducted. Whatever the size of the company or the amount of debt and assets involved, we can scale our services to meet your needs.

Managing risk up front

Often, what happens on the front end of a deal can significantly limit risk in future bankruptcies. We work closely with our commercial finance and corporate teams to structure transactions that meet clients' short-term needs and protect them if a deal, asset or company underperforms later. By anticipating that insolvency issues will touch every business, we position our clients to negotiate from strength.

Experience

  • Lead counsel to WIS International, Inc. and affiliated multinational entities in the successful out-of-court restructuring of $300 million of senior and mezzanine debt claims. This involved the sale of Canadian and European subsidiaries and the resolution of various tax and litigation claims. We worked with several groups with diverse interests and oversaw an expedited and economic transformation of the companies.
  • Represented administrative agent on behalf of nine-lender syndicate in restructuring of defaulted $160 million credit facility owned by Las Vegas-based operator of four casinos (one with an adjacent hotel), 40 gaming taverns and 154-location slot-route operation. Half of lending syndicate was hedge funds with very different goals than the other half of the syndicate, comprised of institutional banks. We resolved the issue out of Chapter 11, saving enormous amounts of time and litigation costs.
  • Lead counsel to institutional lender as administrative agent in the restructure of a defaulted $100 million loan to Las Vegas-based, nonprofit, specialty oncology hospital Nevada Cancer Institute. Once Nevada Cancer filed for Chapter 11 in Las Vegas, we helped devise a solution that met all of the stakeholders' needs: sell Nevada Cancer Institute to a hospital affiliated with University of California, San Diego to ensure uninterrupted service to patients and a decent resolution for our client.
  • Lead counsel to collateral and indenture trustee for $725 million first-lien senior secured notes issued by Cengage Learning Acquisition Corporation in its $7 billion debt restructuring. Chapter 11 case filed in the US Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of New York.
  • Lead counsel to a vitamin and nutritional supplement retailer, and affiliated entities, as debtors in their pending Delaware Chapter 11 cases. These cases involved complicated supply and lease agreements and resulted in a successful sale of substantially all of the client's assets. We worked with all constituents to greatly accelerate the typical marketing-to-closing timetable.
  • Lead counsel to Chinese investment group in $360 million acquisition of a 5,000-unit multifamily real estate project located in Texas and Maryland through the restructure of multi-tranche CMBS debt in Chapter 11 case of the prior owner. Transaction was accomplished by discounted purchases of existing debt from certain pre-petition creditors with conversion of debt to equity in the bankruptcy proceeding. Client ultimately assumed the remaining CMBS debt at favorable restructured terms.
  • Lead counsel to indenture trustee for $6.4 billion first-lien notes issued by Caesars Entertainment Operating Company, owner and operator of Caesars Palace Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas and 38 owned or managed gaming and resort properties in 14 states and five countries, operating primarily under the Caesars, Harrah's and Horseshoe brand names. The Chapter 11 case is pending in the US Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Illinois (Chicago).
  • Lead counsel to Official Committee of Equity Security Holders in Chapter 11 case of Tronox, Inc. in the Southern District of New York. Tronox is an international manufacturer of pigments used in paint and other materials. Tronox filed for bankruptcy protection to address legacy liabilities including environmental remediation and litigation costs it incurred when it was spun off from former parent Kerr McGee, Inc. Total funded debt exceeded $850 million. *
  • Represented Hartford Computer Group, Inc./Nexicore Services, Inc. as debtors in their Chapter 11 cases in the Northern District of Illinois. This is a cross-border transaction and includes Canadian insolvency proceedings. Transaction includes Canadian assets and we coordinated with Canadian co-counsel on insolvency, mergers and acquisitions and tax matters to consummate the transaction.
  • Defended Cayman Island hedge fund against $324 million preference action brought by the creditors' committee in the In re Refco, Inc. Chapter 11 case in the US Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York.
  • Lead counsel to institutional lender as administrative agent for second-lien lenders in the restructure of $266 million credit in the Penton Media Business Holdings (Penton Media) pre-packaged Chapter 11 case in the US Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York. Plan was confirmed in less than one month after petition date.
  • Lead counsel to administrative and collateral agent for $275 million second- lien credit facility secured by Atlantic City casino in Chapter 11 case in the US District Court for the District of New Jersey.
  • Lead counsel to indenture trustee for $250 million secured bonds in Chapter 11 bankruptcy of Green Field Energy Services in Wilmington, Delaware.
  • Lead counsel to institutional lender as successor administrative agent in the restructure of $550 million in defaulted senior notes issued by Green Valley Ranch Gaming, LLC in its Chapter 11 case in Reno, Nevada. Attorney was at the center of the creditor negotiations, helping to devise a clear path for the lenders that was ultimately approved by the bankruptcy court.  *
  • Lead trial counsel for equity committee of insolvent multinational manufacturer of high-performance chemical-based materials for industrial and consumer use in its $2 billion lawsuit against former parent, asserting that former parent undercapitalized company at spin-off, fraudulently transferred certain liabilities and misrepresented the scope of future environmental liabilities in public documents related to the spin-off.  *
  • Lead counsel to indenture trustee for $200 million notes issued by Nortel Networks Limited (Canada) in the $7 billion Nortel sale proceeds allocation dispute litigation in joint proceedings in the US Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware and the Ontario, Canada, Superior Court of Justice.
  • Lead counsel for collateral and indenture trustee in the restructure of $143 million mortgage notes issued by Circus Circus (MGM) and Eldorado Joint Venture and secured by Silver Legacy Resort Casino in Reno, Nevada. Silver Legacy, the largest hotel and casino in Reno, is an 87,300-square-foot casino with a 37-story hotel tower containing 1,711 guest rooms.
  • Lead counsel to a financial institution and co-lead of the Seventh Circuit and US Supreme Court brief-drafting teams in related bankruptcy proceedings that involved the US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit all the way to the US Supreme Court. At issue was the ability of our client and its co-lender to credit-bid on a plan of reorganization. The US Supreme Court unanimously ruled in our client's favor and made new law.
  • Represent metals recycling company in its Chapter 11 proceedings in the US Bankruptcy Court for the District of Colorado.
  • Represent former largest shareholders of a multimedia company in its bankruptcies and in the related multi-district litigation fraudulent transfer actions, believed to be among the largest such actions ever litigated. These are cases of first impression relating to 11 U.S.C. § 546(e) and other fraudulent transfer defenses. Lead litigation counsel and member of the executive committee formed to represent the 20,000+ defendants.
* Experience prior to Katten