Liquidation of a Luxembourg based finance company

Overview:

  • The company was a Luxembourg based holding/finance company for a Greek Telecom operating company
  • The company’s Centre of Main Interests (“COMI”) was relocated from Luxembourg to the UK in August 2009 as part of a restructuring exercise
  • It was placed into Administration in November 2009 when a pre-pack disposal was completed of the business and assets of the operating subsidiary was effected
  • This involved rolling over circa €1.9 billion of senior debt issued by other group companies, to a “Newco”, but leaving a further €1.2 billion of subordinated bondholders “out of the money”
  • This case has been referred to as the largest “pre-pack” in European history
  • As an active case, a number of remarkable facts about this case may not be disclosed at this point
  • Indebtedness – Numerous financial institutions – circa €1.2billion in bondholder capital unpaid, plus interest

Outcome:

  • Ongoing
  • Identified post petition VAT refund as means of funding initial stage of litigation
  • With close liaison between the restructuring investigations team, the forensics team and our VAT expert, and involving notarised affidavits from non-UK based professionals, the liquidators were able to procure a UK VAT registration for the company
  • Neither the company itself prior to administration, nor the subsequent administrator, and their legal advisers, were able to achieve this
  • Negotiated a seven-figure VAT refund
  • Litigation is being progressed in a number of jurisdictions

 

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