Business

Corporate recovery, restructuring & insolvency

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Working together to protect your interests.

The coronavirus outbreak is causing unprecedented disruption to businesses. We are in uncharted territory for our society and our economy. Even with government support there is mounting financial pressure on businesses as they contend with this unprecedented uncertainty.

The retail world has clearly been significantly impacted, with CVAs becoming increasingly prevalent. Dealing with circumstances related to financial distress can be extremely difficult from a business and personal perspective be you a debtor or a creditor.

Whether you are looking to restructure your current operations or seeking guidance on insolvency, you need to work closely with a team to devise an innovative strategy which will protect your interests and maximise the economic outcome of your situation. Whilst we cannot predict or control outside events, we can help you plan how best to protect your businesses and any personal liability you could face.

Our Corporate recovery & restructuring team works with financial institutions, insolvency funders, private equity houses and turnaround professionals, insolvency practitioners and businesses and individuals across a range of different industries. We have substantial experience working with Boards to guide them through difficult trading periods. We work with cash flows to deal with creditors in the best way for all, including negotiation and drafting appropriate standstills. We also work for office holders and litigation funders, always striving to maximise returns for creditors.

We fully integrate with your team, building up a thorough understanding of your business and your commercial position. We will then guide you through the potential opportunities and risks and work collaboratively with you to develop a pragmatic and commercially focused strategy tailored to your business. Our team is constantly striving to find new and more effective solutions for our clients and is committed to delivering the best possible results.

We advise on:

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Thirty minutes free legal advice

Thirty minutes free legal advice

Coronavirus Corporate Recovery & Restructuring Advice Helpline

We are now offering clients a Corporate Recovery & Restructuring Advice Helpline. This provides clients with instant access to our team of specialist lawyers and up to thirty minutes free legal advice.

We are here to answer any queries or concerns you might have regarding the impact of Covid-19, what legal options are available to you, and what steps you can take to protect your business, your staff.

Contact the team
Six options that could help businesses stave off the need for immediate redundancies

Six options that could help businesses stave off the need for immediate redundancies

Coronavirus: six alternatives to making redundancies

The economic impact of Coronavirus (COVID-19) on businesses will be significant. Employers will need to strike a delicate balance between protecting the solvency of their business and supporting their employees.

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Turnaround and restructuring

We have wide and varied experience of all aspects of turnaround and restructuring over many financial crises whether acting for creditor groups, restructuring practitioners or working with the board through the process, providing them with protection and comfort they need through the difficult times. We have been at the front end of restructuring in the Covid 19 crisis working to mothball companies to await the end of lockdown and planning the exit strategy including CVAs and Schemes of Arrangement to avoid overtrading. We have been at the front end of restructuring in the Covid 19 crisis working to mothball companies to await the end of lockdown and planning the exit strategy including CVAs and Schemes of Arrangement to avoid overtrading

Make an enquiry

Administrations

We regularly act for administrators, advise directors on putting their company into administration and assist creditors of companies which have gone into administration, particularly landlords. We advise companies on the accelerated M&A process and administrators on the many issues trading the business of insolvent companies and on selling the businesses whether via a pre-pack or following a period of extensive marketing through the trading period.

Make an enquiry

Buying businesses from administrators and liquidators

As well as selling the businesses and assets of insolvent companies for administrators we act for entrepreneurs and investors  (ranging from high net worth individuals looking to diversify their investments to venture capital and private equity firms) in buying businesses from administrators and liquidators. One of the hopes of the end of the closing of the economy caused by Covid 19 will be the ability of this new money to save otherwise good businesses which have failed through no fault of their own.

Make an enquiry

Compulsory and voluntary liquidations

We regularly advise liquidators, directors, shareholders and creditors on all issues relating to compulsory and voluntary liquidations, including solvent liquidations (MVLs).

Make an enquiry

Insolvency litigation both for and against insolvency practitioners

We regularly act on Insolvency Act and ‘breach of duty’ claims by liquidators and administrators; we also advise directors threatened with such claims.

Make an enquiry

Bankruptcy

We have acted for the trustee on many high-value and complex bankruptcies; we also regularly advise bankruptcy creditors, the bankrupt’s spouse and the bankrupt. We also have considerable experience of advising on voluntary arrangements and bankruptcy annulments.

Make an enquiry

Directors’ disqualification proceedings

We have considerable experience of advising directors threatened with disqualification proceedings. We regularly defend such proceedings, negotiate the terms of disqualification undertakings and act on applications for permission to be a director while disqualified.

Make an enquiry

Shareholder disputes/unfair prejudice proceedings

We regularly act in shareholder disputes and often advise minority shareholders unhappy with the way a company is being run on their rights and remedies. We are very experienced in these disputes which can be as bitter as a divorce particularly with family companies (often following a bereavement or arising during succession planning) and between former friends who went into business together and we have the patience and the insights and experience to steer the parties to a successful outcome, most frequently through mediation.

Make an enquiry

Security Reviews

Having worked in Insolvency and restructuring for so long (our Team’s experience goes back to 1980) we are expert and analysing often complex security and priority arrangements affecting companies and members of the security group. This is of particular importance for boards, investors and funders considering any form of restructuring, and to administrators and liquidators who need to know how to deal with assets in their control which may be subject to fixed or floating charges.

Make an enquiry

Turnaround and restructuring

We have wide and varied experience of all aspects of turnaround and restructuring over many financial crises whether acting for creditor groups, restructuring practitioners or working with the board through the process, providing them with protection and comfort they need through the difficult times. We have been at the front end of restructuring in the Covid 19 crisis working to mothball companies to await the end of lockdown and planning the exit strategy including CVAs and Schemes of Arrangement to avoid overtrading.
We have been at the front end of restructuring in the Covid 19 crisis working to mothball companies to await the end of lockdown and planning the exit strategy including CVAs and Schemes of Arrangement to avoid overtrading

Make an enquiry

Administrations

We regularly act for administrators, advise directors on putting their company into administration and assist creditors of companies which have gone into administration, particularly landlords.
We advise companies on the accelerated M&A process and administrators on the many issues trading the business of insolvent companies and on selling the businesses whether via a pre-pack or following a period of extensive marketing through the trading period.

Make an enquiry

Buying businesses from administrators and liquidators

As well as selling the businesses and assets of insolvent companies for administrators we act for entrepreneurs and investors  (ranging from high net worth individuals looking to diversify their investments to venture capital and private equity firms) in buying businesses from administrators and liquidators.
One of the hopes of the end of the closing of the economy caused by Covid 19 will be the ability of this new money to save otherwise good businesses which have failed through no fault of their own.

Make an enquiry

Compulsory and voluntary liquidations

We regularly advise liquidators, directors, shareholders and creditors on all issues relating to compulsory and voluntary liquidations, including solvent liquidations (MVLs).

Insolvency litigation both for and against insolvency practitioners

We regularly act on Insolvency Act and ‘breach of duty’ claims by liquidators and administrators; we also advise directors threatened with such claims.

Bankruptcy

We have acted for the trustee on many high-value and complex bankruptcies; we also regularly advise bankruptcy creditors, the bankrupt’s spouse and the bankrupt. We also have considerable experience of advising on voluntary arrangements and bankruptcy annulments.

Directors’ disqualification proceedings

We have considerable experience of advising directors threatened with disqualification proceedings. We regularly defend such proceedings, negotiate the terms of disqualification undertakings and act on applications for permission to be a director while disqualified.

Shareholder disputes/unfair prejudice proceedings

We regularly act in shareholder disputes and often advise minority shareholders unhappy with the way a company is being run on their rights and remedies. We are very experienced in these disputes which can be as bitter as a divorce particularly with family companies (often following a bereavement or arising during succession planning)
and between former friends who went into business together and we have the patience and the insights and experience to steer the parties to a successful outcome, most frequently through mediation.

Make an enquiry

Security Reviews

Having worked in Insolvency and restructuring for so long (our Team’s experience goes back to 1980) we are expert and analysing often complex security and priority arrangements affecting companies and members of the security group.
This is of particular importance for boards, investors and funders considering any form of restructuring, and to administrators and liquidators who need to know how to deal with assets in their control which may be subject to fixed or floating charges.

Make an enquiry

Landlord advice following retail tenant CVA

We advised a large commercial landlord on its rights and options after it was served with House of Fraser’s CVA proposal.

House of Fraser’s CVA, which was approved by creditors in June 2018, included plans to close 31 of its 59 UK and Ireland stores, and reduce rent on stores remaining open. The landlords argued that they were being unfairly prejudiced by the CVA process and challenged its approval before later reaching a settlement with the company.

Fraudulent trading and misfeasance claim

We are acting on a fraudulent trading and misfeasance claim against a director who caused his company to incur over £250,000 of professional fees on a speculative property development despite the company having no funds, no bank account, no loan facility and capital of precisely £1. The claim was acquired from the company’s liquidators by Manolete Partners plc.

Investor in an insolvent company

We are advising an investor in an insolvent company on how the company should deal with an onerous lease. This has involved comparing the cost of negotiating a surrender with the landlord with the landlord’s likely claim for loss in any subsequent liquidation if the lease is not surrendered, the company goes into liquidation and the liquidator disclaims the lease.

High-net worth individuals with complex off-shore interests defending bankruptcy petitions

We recently  advised two (unconnected) high-net worth individuals with complex off-shore interests who were/ are defending bankruptcy petitions. In the first case, we were able to negotiate a dismissal of the petition by consent in return for a payment of about 8% of the debt (which was £4m) after persuading the petitioning creditor that the lack of UK assets in the client’s name meant his bankruptcy would lead to a much lower recovery. The other case is still ongoing.

Landlord advice following retail tenant CVA

We advised a large commercial landlord on its rights and options after it was served with House of Fraser’s CVA proposal.

House of Fraser’s CVA, which was approved by creditors in June 2018, included plans to close 31 of its 59 UK and Ireland stores, and reduce rent on stores remaining open. The landlords argued that they were being unfairly prejudiced by the CVA process and challenged its approval before later reaching a settlement with the company.

Gavin Kramer

Fraudulent trading and misfeasance claim

We are acting on a fraudulent trading and misfeasance claim against a director who caused his company to incur over £250,000 of professional fees on a speculative property development despite the company having no funds, no bank account, no loan facility and capital of precisely £1. The claim was acquired from the company’s liquidators by Manolete Partners plc.

Gavin Kramer

Investor in an insolvent company

We are advising an investor in an insolvent company on how the company should deal with an onerous lease. This has involved comparing the cost of negotiating a surrender with the landlord with the landlord’s likely claim for loss in any subsequent liquidation if the lease is not surrendered, the company goes into liquidation and the liquidator disclaims the lease.

Jeff Roberts

High-net worth individuals with complex off-shore interests defending bankruptcy petitions

We recently  advised two (unconnected) high-net worth individuals with complex off-shore interests who were/ are defending bankruptcy petitions. In the first case, we were able to negotiate a dismissal of the petition by consent in return for a payment of about 8% of the debt (which was £4m) after persuading the petitioning creditor that the lack of UK assets in the client’s name meant his bankruptcy would lead to a much lower recovery. The other case is still ongoing.

Gavin Kramer