Reporting from S&P Global shows that from January 1, 2020 through December 13, 2020, there were 610 commercial bankruptcy filings by public and private entities with at least $2 million in reported assets or liabilities at the time of the bankruptcy filing. Entities in the consumer discretionary, industrial, energy, and healthcare industries made up over

The Wall Street Journal reports on the growth of dividend recapitalization transactions during the COVID-19 pandemic by private equity controlled companies. That growth stands in contrast to prior economic downturns. [WSJ; Dec 17, 2020]

Reporting from Yahoo Finance addresses the growing control that investment firms and hedge funds exert over commercial restructuring efforts as a

In a new opinion issued in the Chuck E. Cheese bankruptcy cases, In re CEC Entertainment, Inc., Case No. 20-33163 (Bankr. S.D. Tex.),1 Judge Marvin Isgur of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Texas ruled2 that CEC Entertainment, Inc. (“CEC”), the parent company of the Chuck E. Cheese pizza chain, could not defer its rent obligations due to ongoing COVID-19 disruptions beyond the initial 60-day period authorized by section 365(d)(3) of the Bankruptcy Code.  While CEC had initially sought rent relief with respect to dozens of its store locations, it was able to settle with the landlords for all but six locations in North Carolina, Washington, and California; the non-settling landlords continued to insist that CEC was required to pay rent despite the global pandemic and CEC’s bankruptcy filing.  In its December 14, 2020 opinion, the court agreed with these landlords and rejected each of CEC’s arguments for its proposed relief, including that: (1) sections 105 and 365 of the Bankruptcy Code authorized the Bankruptcy Court to suspend CEC’s rent obligations beyond the 60-day period included in Section 365(d)(3); (2) the COVID-19 pandemic—and related restrictions put in place by state and local governments—constituted a force majeure event under each of the six leases at issue; and (3) CEC’s inability to fully utilize the leased premises as a result of state and local restrictions on indoor dining and entertainment entitled CED to a “frustration of purpose” defense with respect to each lease.

Continue Reading Opinion of Interest – In re CEC Entertainment Inc.: COVID Disruptions Do Not Justify Additional Rent Deferrals Beyond Initial 60-Day Period Expressly Permitted by Bankruptcy Code

AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc. announced that it is exploring financing alternatives to address the financial strain on the company resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, including an at-the-market sale of 178 million shares, reports The Street. This announcement comes after Walt Disney Co. announced that approximately 80% of its new content in 2021 would be

Business Insider reports that AMC Theaters recently sought to raise up to $844 million through stock sales to improve its financial condition, which has been substantially weakened due to restrictions on indoor gatherings put in place in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. AMC’s stock price took a major hit after Warner Bros. announced it would

Reuters reports that the Brazilian government will forgive approximately US$1.3 billion worth of debt owed to it by telecommunications firm Oi SA, which has been involved in a pending bankruptcy proceeding in Brazil since 2016. [Reuters; Nov. 27, 2020]

Reporting from Bloomberg indicates that boutique apparel chain Francesca’s Holdings Corp. is preparing to file for

Reporting from Bloomberg shows that during the first eight months of the COVID-19 pandemic, approximately $52 billion of rent under retail leases went unpaid.  The reporting further indicates that in many instances, these rent obligations have been deferred through out-of-court agreements between landlords and tenants and that there may be an appetite for further relief

Bloomberg reports that Revlon Inc. was able to exchange approximately $236.5 million of its $343 million in outstanding bonds that were scheduled to mature in 2021 in a deal that the company said should eliminate the need for a chapter 11 bankruptcy filing in the near future. [Bloomberg; Nov. 11, 2020]

The Washington Post reports