Pacific Andes seeks court protection

Hong Kong-based industrial fishing firm Pacific Andes Resources Development (Pard) yesterday reassured shareholders on its restructuring process.

The firm said in a statement that "it has taken steps to ensure the continuation of its transparent, comprehensive and fully effective restructuring process".

It has made voluntary court filings to obtain Chapter 11 protection against the "precipitous actions" of bank creditor Maybank.

This comes after a Singapore court ruled on Monday that a stay of execution by Pard's creditors is confined to Singapore.

Lawyers for creditors Maybank and Bank of America took action after that. Maybank filed a petition in the Bermuda Supreme Court to wind up Pard that same day, the firm said on Thursday. The petition is scheduled for hearing on Oct 14. Maybank also filed an ex parte summons in the Bermuda Court to appoint joint provisional liquidators for Pard, with a hearing scheduled yesterday.

The firm said: "Those actions by a single bank creditor would have destroyed value for the majority of creditors and stakeholders.

"Pard's filings will allow the orderly and transparent restructuring of the group under the supervision of the United States court."

The fish seller had previously applied for protection under the Singapore Companies Act and, on Sept 26, the High Court allowed an extension.

The conclusion was that the extension's duration and any terms and conditions would be decided at a hearing on Oct 12.

Pard said that even before the court published its reasons for the decision, Maybank, Rabobank and Bank of America took the matter into other jurisdictions.

Pard executive chairman Jessie Ng said: "It is clear that these bank creditors have the single-minded objective of conducting a fire sale of the broader group's most valuable asset to the detriment of other creditors and stakeholders.

"We have made it clear from the beginning that our commitment is to provide the best possible outcome for all creditors. Placing Pard under Chapter 11 protection is totally consistent with that commitment, allowing us to continue with flexibility to maximise value for all."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 01, 2016, with the headline 'Pacific Andes seeks court protection'. Print Edition | Subscribe