Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP

05/03/2021 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 05/03/2021 08:46

Akin Gump Advises Ad Hoc Group of Noteholders on $7.1 Billion Valaris plc Financial Restructuring

(London) - Akin Gump has acted as English, Hong Kong, German and UAE counsel, and international antitrust counsel, to the ad hoc group of noteholders in relation to the financial restructuring of UK offshore drilling contractor Valaris plc and its outstanding debt liabilities of approximately $7.1 billion. Valaris is the world's largest offshore drilling company by fleet size.

In August 2020, Valaris announced that it had filed a voluntary petition to commence a chapter 11 process in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court, following entry into a restructuring support agreement and backstop commitment agreement with certain of its noteholders to reorganize its financial structure and substantially reduce its debt load.

The restructuring involved an equitization of the outstanding debt liabilities, the provision of a debtor-in-possession facility by the the ad hoc group of noteholders and the issuance of new secured notes. The restructuring was implemented via chapter 11 and an English pre-pack administration sale. Throughout the process, Valaris continued to operate in the ordinary course of business.

Judge Marvin Isgur of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court noted in his confirmation remarks that the chapter 11 plan involved a 'full deleveraging' of the group and the confirmation of the plan in eight months was a 'remarkable achievement.'

Akin Gump worked alongside Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel LLP in New York which acted as lead and U.S. counsel to the ad hoc group of priority guaranteed noteholders in connection with the restructuring.

The Akin Gump team was led by London financial restructuring partner James Terrywith counsel Jakeob Brown. The team also included Hong Kong financial restructuring partner Naomi Moore,counsel Jeremy Haywoodand associate Janice Wong, Frankfurt restructuring counsel Markus K├Ąpplerand London financial restructuring associate Diana Dai; competition partner Davina Garrod, counsel Victoria Yuan and associate Sebastian Casselbrant-Multala; finance partner Stephen Peppiatt and associate Blake Sherry; financial regulatory partner Ezra Zahabi and associate Suley Siddiqui; tax partners Stuart Sinclair and Sophie Donnithorne-Tait and counsel Serena Lee; international trade partners Chiara Klaui and Christian C. Davis; corporate partner Vance Chapman, counsel Jasdeep Rai and associate Kelvin Mahal, and UAE corporate partner Rizwan Kanji and corporate counsel Hamed Afzal.

Akin Gump also recently advised an ad hoc group of noteholders in the successful $4 billion financial restructuring of Noble Corporation plc. Please read more here.

Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP is a leading international law firm with more than 900 lawyers in offices throughout the United States, Europe, Asia and the Middle East.

# # #