Noble Group says key shareholder approves revised restructuring plan

 Noble Group says key shareholder approves revised restructuring plan

(Reuters) - Embattled commodity trader Noble Group on Wednesday said its shareholders would receive 20 percent of the equity in the company after restructuring, and that Goldilocks Investment Co would support the revised plan.

Noble, which has been struggling to secure shareholder approval to restructure its $3.5 billion of debt, had asked for a trading halt on Monday pending an announcement.

Abu Dhabi-based Goldilocks Investment Co Ltd, which holds 8.1 percent of Noble, had been resisting a plan to restructure Noble that proposed halving the firm's debt in return for handing over 70 percent of equity to senior creditors, with shareholders getting 15 percent.

"By reaching agreement with Goldilocks, the Company is now able to move into the final stages of its restructuring and looks forward to executing the restructuring support agreement (RSA)," Chairman Paul Brough said in a statement.

Debt restructuring is seen as crucial for the survival of Noble, which has already sold billions of dollars of assets, taken hefty writedowns and cut hundreds of jobs over the past three years.

Goldilocks had filed complaints and lawsuits against Noble, arguing that the planned restructuring protected creditors at the expense of shareholders.

Goldilocks will be entitled to nominate one person to the board of directors in the restructured group, Noble said on Wednesday.

Noble said the remaining equity in the new restructured company would be 70-percent held by senior creditors and 10 percent by management.

The commodity trader had improved the terms of its controversial debt restructuring deal, saying in April all existing shareholders would get a 15 percent stake in the restructured firm, replacing a previous proposal under which they would receive 10 percent.

(Reporting by Rushil Dutta in Bengaluru; Editing by Joseph Radford)

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Updated Date: Jun 20, 2018 07:06:58 IST