All items from WSJ.com: Bankruptcy Beat

India’s Sesa Sterlite Ltd. has lost a bid to block a bankruptcy-court order requiring it to pay an $82.75 million judgment stemming from its failed attempt to acquire Asarco LLC, a U.S.-based copper miner. Read Peg Brickley’s story in the Daily Bankruptcy Review.
(Daily Bankruptcy Review is a daily newsletter with comprehensive coverage and analysis of emerging and in-progress insolvencies and turnarounds. For a two-week trial, visit our homepage, scroll to the bottom and click “try for free.”)
Freedom Industries Inc., the company behind a chemical spill that contaminated a significant swath of West Virginia’s water supply, filed a creditor-payment plan that aims to start resolving the claims brought by those affected by the spill. Read DBR’s Joe Checkler in The Wall Street Journal.
Three weeks after defaulting on its debt, Argentina moved to circumvent a U.S. court order by offering a bond swap that would let it pay bondholders in Argentina instead of in the U.S., WSJ reports.



Posted 1 week 2 days ago

Energy Future Holdings Corp. Tuesday successfully fended off questions from creditors anxious to probe the financial health of a company division that is the target of deal talks.
The questions arose in a brewing court fight over whether Energy Future owes of millions of dollars of premiums on $4 billion worth of debt attached to the division, which owns an 80% stake in the Texas transmission business, Oncor.  At some point, that fight may turn on the question of whether the division is solvent. The answer to that question is in the works, as Energy Future engages in talks aimed at selling the Oncor stake, probably by way of a complex transaction worked into a Chapter 11 restructuring plan.
“The case is dynamic,” commented Judge Christopher Sontchi, at a court session where he said investors pressing the premium litigation could ask questions later about the solvency of the Energy Future division, Energy Future Intermediate Holding. By the time those questions are asked, the judge said, the “extraordinary” course of the Texas power company’s bankruptcy case may have made the answers obvious.
When Energy Future filed for Chapter 11 protection in April,  it had a predetermined pathway out of bankruptcy. Some leading creditors had agreed to split the company in two, with one division to be spun out, and the other, Energy Future Intermediate, reorganized.



Posted 1 week 3 days ago

The Chicago Bears are up against a tough foe, but not on the gridiron. Try bankruptcy court.
Edison Mission Energy, which emerged from Chapter 11 protection this spring, is challenging the $114,240 unsecured claim that da Bears filed against the company last year. The claim is tied to the annual license fee the NFL football team charges for use of an executive suite at Soldier Field, a license that an Edison Mission affiliate terminated during the bankruptcy case.
In an objection filed Monday, Edison Mission’s administrators say the company doesn’t owe the Bears a penny. They also pointed out that the Bears could have asked to tap the $14,300 security deposit that the Edison Mission affiliate put down in 2004 in order to first license the suite—money that Edison Mission says the team hasn’t returned.



Posted 1 week 3 days ago

Daehan Shipbuilding Co. Ltd. filed for Chapter 15 bankruptcy protection Monday in New York, seeking to shield its U.S. assets from efforts to collect a $54.5 million judgment. Read the story in the Daily Bankruptcy Review. 
(Daily Bankruptcy Review is a daily newsletter with comprehensive coverage and analysis of emerging and in-progress insolvencies and turnarounds. For a two-week trial, visit our homepage, scroll to the bottom and click “try for free.”)
The shutdown of Crumbs Bake Shop has left vendors further down the supply chain, like a family-run bakery in the Bronx, picking up the pieces. Read DBR reporter Sara Randazzo’s piece in The Wall Street Journal.



Posted 1 week 3 days ago

Latin American Nextel wireless provider NII Holdings Inc. won’t make a $118.8 million interest payment to bondholders, the company announced Friday, days after it warned it would likely have to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. Read the Daily Bankruptcy Review story here.
(Daily Bankruptcy Review is a daily newsletter with comprehensive coverage and analysis of emerging and in-progress insolvencies and turnarounds. For a two-week trial, visit our homepage, scroll to the bottom and click “try for free.”)
Exide Technologies has been hit with a grand jury subpoena in connection with a criminal investigation involving its Vernon, Calif., lead-recycling plant. Read the Daily Bankruptcy Review story in The Wall Street Journal.
Credit Suisse Group AG helped sell billions of dollars of securities that ultimately played a role in toppling Portugal’s second-largest bank, The Wall Street Journal reports.



Posted 1 week 4 days ago

A closed Crumbs Bake Shop store is seen in New York July 8, 2014. 
Reuters

Bankruptcy lawyers for Crumbs Bake Shop Inc. are preparing to hold an auction on Thursday to see who else has a sweet tooth for the chain, whose 49 cupcake stores closed suddenly on July 7.
An investor group that includes Dippin’ Dots owner Fischer Enterprises and reality TV show host Marcus Lemonis plan to open the auction with a multimillion-dollar offer. The group’s approximately $6.5 million credit bid would forgive loans Fischer and Mr. Lemonis have extended to Crumbs, including a $1.1 million loan that is paying for the company’s bankruptcy.
In earlier documents filed in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Trenton, N.J., company officials said they need to complete a sale before that money runs out at the end of August.



Posted 2 weeks 8 hours ago

General unsecured creditors of Lehman Brothers Inc. will receive $4.6 billion in their first distribution, perhaps as soon as next month. The Wall Street Journal has the Daily Bankruptcy Review article here.
(Daily Bankruptcy Review is a daily newsletter with comprehensive coverage and analysis of emerging and in-progress insolvencies and turnarounds. For a two-week trial, visit our homepage, scroll to the bottom and click “try for free.”)
Long-running litigation over the terms of a patent licensing deal between Eastman Kodak Co. and Japanese electronics maker Ricoh Co. came to a close this week with the announcement of a $43 million settlement that puts Ricoh on the losing end of the dispute. DBR reports via WSJ.
Argentina’s president threatened to press charges against a subsidiary of RR Donnelley for laying off hundreds of workers and allegedly trying to destabilize the economy, WSJ reports.



Posted 2 weeks 9 hours ago

Investigations trying to unwind the machinations of Bernie Madoff’s Ponzi scheme in 2009 were surprised to find what appeared to be another Ponzi scheme inside it, and the father-and-son team that were running that scam this week pleaded guilty. MarketWatch’s Sitel Patel joined the MoneyBeat show with details.



Posted 2 weeks 1 day ago

Creditors threatened with big losses in Energy Future Holdings Corp.’s bankruptcy case are demanding answers about the tax issues they say are driving the big Dallas power seller’s strategy for restructuring its $42 billion debt load. Read the Daily Bankruptcy Review article here.
(Daily Bankruptcy Review is a daily newsletter with comprehensive coverage and analysis of emerging and in-progress insolvencies and turnarounds. For a two-week trial, visit our homepage, scroll to the bottom and click “try for free.”)
Lawyers for Bernard Madoff‘s two sons are asking a bankruptcy judge to reject the latest bid by Irving Picard, the court-appointed trustee handling the bankruptcy of Mr. Madoff’s firm, to sue the Madoff brothers over their alleged role in their father’s Ponzi scheme. Read the DBR article via The Wall Street Journal.



Posted 2 weeks 1 day ago

A small hospital in Bloomington, Ind., has filed for bankruptcy with an eye-popping $134 million worth of debt.
Officials at Monroe Hospital, which has 32 beds but only cares for an average of eight patients, told a federal judge that the hospital owes about $121.8 million to a real estate investment trust that is both its landlord and lender.
The 315-worker hospital is located in the college town’s (home of Indiana University) southern suburbs on land owned by an affiliate of publicly traded Medical Properties Trust Inc., which also extended a loan to the hospital, according to documents filed Friday in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Indianapolis.
For such a small facility, the hospital is carrying quite a debt load, experts said.
“This is an enormous amount of debt,” said Mary Lane, a bankruptcy attorney with Mitchell Silberberg & Knupp LLP in California who specializes in health-care reorganizations. Another expert in that area, Dawn Gideon of the Huron Consulting Group , agreed that the debt amount “appears to be an extremely high number” for the hospital’s size.
An official for Medical Properties Trust declined to comment, though hospital officials provided a few details in court papers on where the numbers came from:



Posted 2 weeks 2 days ago