By Nick Brown
NEW YORK, Oct 29 (Reuters) - Aerospace manufacturer Hawker
Beechcraft Inc on Monday unveiled a bankruptcy exit plan that
would give control of the company to secured creditors after a
proposed sale to a Chinese firm fell through.
The Wichita, Kansas-based firm filed a disclosure statement
in Manhattan bankruptcy court revealing plans to hand 81.1
percent of its new equity to senior lenders, which include
Angelo Gordon & Co, Centerbridge Partners, Sankaty Advisors and
Capital Research & Management. The rest of the equity would go
to senior and junior noteholders, according to the filing.
The move comes 11 days after Hawker's announcement that its
plan to sell itself to China's Superior Aviation Beijing Co for
$1.79 billion had fallen through. Hawker said at the time that
it would pursue a backup plan under which creditors would
receive equity and general unsecured claims would be canceled.
Hawker CEO Steve Miller said at an Oct. 18 conference that
China-bashing by U.S. presidential candidates may have
contributed to the failure of the sale talks.
"Global politics may have interfered," said Miller, who had
been in Beijing the previous week trying to sell the firm.
Miller cited competing calls from Democrats and Republicans for
toughness on China's currency policies.
The new plan should allow for Hawker to emerge as a
standalone company in early 2013. The plan requires creditor and
court approval, though Hawker said it already has the support of
The company has said it would rename itself Beechcraft Corp
and would likely get out of the corporate jet business, focusing
on turboprop, piston, special mission and trainer/attack
Owned by Goldman Sachs's private equity unit and Canada's
Onex, Hawker went into a tailspin after the 2008 financial
crisis and subsequent economic downturn. It filed bankruptcy in
May with about $2.5 billion in debt, including roughly $1.8
billion under a senior credit facility.
The plan provides for a $530 million exit loan under which
Hawker will be able to pay off its previous bankruptcy loan,
according to the filing.
In presidential debates, Republican Mitt Romney has slammed
President Barack Obama for allowing China to keep its currency
at low levels to the detriment of U.S. competitiveness and trade
deficits. Obama has countered that he is tougher on trade
policies with China than Romney would be.
The bankruptcy is In Re Hawker Beechcraft Inc et al, U.S.
Bankruptcy Court, Southern District of New York, No. 12-11873.
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