Creditors green light Pacific International Lines’ restructuring

Pacific International Lines has filed an application to the Singapore High Court to seek approval for the company’s proposed restructuring plan.

Under the plan, Singapore’s container shipping major is vying for fresh financing from Heliconia Capital Management Pte, an investment firm owned by Temasek Holdings, and a re-profiling of the company’s debts by way of a scheme of arrangement.

The application comes on the back of the approval of the scheme by the requisite majorities of each class of Scheme Creditors on February 1, 2021.

The company started looking for investors having been faced with considerable financial strain due to the impact of the COVID-19 and market volatility including high bunker prices and oversupply of capacity.

PIL has already completed the first stage of its comprehensive financing package having secured a $112 million emergency credit facility to fund overdue trade vendors and other critical cash requirements.

However, this has been described as an interim measure to boost liquidity while discussions on the broader financing solution were underway.

The second stage includes the $600 million financing from the investor that is intended to repay critical vendors, and recalibrate PIL’s capital structure to sustainable levels.

The support for the structuring plan was vital for PIL which would have otherwise been faced liquidation.

The company’s board said that the sanction application has been fixed for hearing by the court on March 3, 2021.

The approval comes as the container shipping market undergoes a major rebound following the Covid-19 impact on the demand-side.

Liner majors have been reporting better than expected full-year results greatly due to capacity discipline, lower bunker prices as well as higher freight rates boosted by market recovery.