Ezion to take over rigs from distressed partner

Interim judicial managers of Singapore’s Swissco, a provider of offshore rigs and vessels, have decided to sell the company’s stake in three jointly-owned rigs to Ezion Holdings.

Offshore Energy Today reported earlier this month that Swissco was in confidential discussions with Ezion Investments, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Ezion Holdings, regarding the sale of its joint ventures and the assets they hold.

In separate statements this week, both companies confirmed that Ezion had agreed to buy the remaining 50 percent equity interest in two jointly owned companies and the three rigs for more than $60 million.

The GSP Atlas and GSP Orizont jack-up rigs along with their charter contracts, receivables, and charter payment guarantees will be bought for $18.7 million each. GSP Fortuna with its charter contract and receivables will be bought for $24.5 million.

The closing of the acquisition is expected to take place on the 16th day after the completion of the disposal of the rigs.

Ezion explained that the two JVs with Swissco were not able to meet their obligations due to, in part, the financial situation faced by Swissco’s subsidiary Scott & English and, as a result, the JV companies were not able to operate effectively.

The company added that it was necessary to purchase the remaining 50 percent shares of the JV companies from Scott & English to continue engagement with existing customers.

 

Sale of Swissco assets

To remind, Swissco’s filed an application to be placed under judicial management on November 21, 2016, after it had failed to reach a debt restructuring deal with creditors. The company reached an impasse with its major lenders, citing significant gap between the group’s aim of sustaining its business in the long term and the position of the lenders.

The Singapore High Court put Swissco Holdings and its subsidiary Swissco Offshore into interim judicial management on November 25, 2016. On September 30, 2016, the group’s total liabilities were $291.6 million.

Swissco’s Interim Judicial Managers (IJMs) said on Tuesday that they were in the process of marketing all or parts of the assets of the company and its subsidiary Swissco Offshore Pte. Ltd (SOPL).

As of February 17, 2017, 12 non-binding expressions of interest have been received. The first phase of due diligence reviews has been conducted, and five indicative bids have been received. A further due diligence review is to be conducted, and formal bids by way of binding transaction documentation are expected to be received by the second week of April.

The outcome of this exercise may affect the IJM’s assessment as to the prospects of one of more of the objectives of a judicial management being achieved.

Offshore Energy Today Staff

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