Excel Maritime Seeks Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Protection
Excel Maritime Carriers Ltd., an owner and operator of dry bulk carriers and an international provider of worldwide seaborne transportation services for dry bulk cargoes, announced that as of July 1, 2013 it has entered into an agreement with its senior lenders on the terms of a financial restructuring. The agreement, which has the support of Excel Maritime's senior secured lenders, is substantially similar to the previously announced agreement in principle the Company reached with the steering committee of its senior lenders and provides the Company with up to $80 million of additional liquidity, significantly strengthens its financial profile and positions Excel Maritime for future growth and success.
In order to implement the terms of the agreement, Excel Maritime filed voluntary Chapter 11 petitions for relief in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York (the "Court"). The restructuring process is expected to have no impact on suppliers and Excel maritime has taken steps to ensure continued supply of goods and services to its customers.
"Today, with the strong support of our senior lenders, we are moving forward with a financial restructuring," said Gabriel Panayotides, Chairman of the Board. "We are confident that we are taking the right actions and we believe that the agreement that we signed today with our senior lenders and the court-supervised process provide for a clear and expedited path to strengthen our financial profile and position Excel Maritime for future growth and success. We appreciate the continued support of our customers and suppliers, and we look forward to creating an even brighter future for Excel Maritime through this process."
Mr. Panayotides added, "We are pleased that during our restructuring process our superior fleet operations will continue to exceed the expectations of our customers, while meeting all obligations to our suppliers. We remain as committed as ever to providing our clients the same high-quality and efficient seaborne transportation services that we always have."
Under the terms of the agreement Excel Maritime will receive:
-- Up to $50 million of capital as a result of an agreement between the senior lenders and an entity affiliated with the family of Mr. Panayotides. Under the terms of that agreement, this entity will receive a majority of the equity in Excel Maritime.
-- The release of an additional $30 million of currently restricted cash.
The Company will continue as usual, meeting all its obligations, and it expects to implement the restructuring and emerge from the court-supervised process on an accelerated basis.