Limetree refinery’s failed bidder calls winning bid a “backdoor liquidation”

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Limetree Bay Oil Refinery facilities are seen in St Croix, US Virgin Islands on June 28, 2017. REUTERS / Alvin Baez

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December 2 (Reuters) – One of the bidders at the bankrupt Limetree Bay refinery opposed the winning bid in court this week, arguing that the new company, which said it wanted to restart the Caribbean facility , really wants to liquidate its assets.

Bankrupt Limetree Bay officially named St. Croix Energy LLLC the winning bidder on Wednesday in a $ 33 million purchase contract, according to a filing with the US bankruptcy court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division.

However, backup bidder Bay Ltd, a Texas-based contractor, opposed the sale in a court case on Wednesday, saying it, along with New York-based Sabin Metal Corp, made a tandem bid. superior for $ 39 million. Bay has asked the court to postpone a sale hearing scheduled for Dec. 7, pending further legal findings.

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“St. Croix’s offer looks like nothing more than a disguised dismantling offer, and in a face-to-face with Bay and Sabin, she falls short of responding,” Bay said in a court filing Wednesday. .

St. Croix Energy said it won the auction in November. He has said he wants to restart the refinery, which was shut down by US regulators earlier this year after a botched restart by private equity owners EIG and Arclight. These companies poured more than $ 4 billion into the facility in an attempt to revive Limetree, which had been closed for several years. Read more

St. Croix Energy said it would buy the refinery for $ 20 million with about $ 13 million in assumed and avoided liabilities and other costs. The company, which has not revealed its management team, was named last month as the bidder for the stalking horse – the initial bid that serves as a floor price.

St. Croix Energy did not respond to a request for comment.

Anyone wishing to restart the refinery must comply with a consent decree from the United States Environmental Protection Agency and may need additional permits to modify or expand parts of the refinery, according to a letter from the agency reviewed. by Reuters.

Sabin made a $ 15.1 million offer on the Refinery Catalyst, a chemical used to refine crude oil into other products, subject to Sabin’s ability to recover and sell the metals from the catalyst. .

Bay has offered around $ 25 million on much of the rest of Limetree’s assets.

Bay also argued that St. Croix Energy had prematurely advertised itself as the winning bidder weeks before it was previously named on the register, violating auction procedures.

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Reporting by Laura Sanicola; Editing by David Gaffen and Aurora Ellis

Our Standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.


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