Aegean Marine files for Chapter 11

Bunker supplier Aegean Marine Petroleum Network has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in New York on Tuesday, after auditors uncovered a fraud amounting to $300m in cash and assets.

Aegean has entered this process with the support of its strategic partner Mercuria Energy Group. Mercuria has agreed to provide more than $532m in post-petition financing to find the Chapter 11 process and Aegean’s working capital needs.

Mercuria would also serve as a ‘staking horse’ bidder, or lead bidder, in the sale of Aegean’s assets.

“The debtors will continue to operate their businesses as ‘debtors-in-possession’ under the jurisdiction of the bankruptcy court and in accordance with the applicable provisions of the US Bankruptcy Code and orders of the bankruptcy court,” Aegean stated.

Kirkland & Ellis LLP is acting as legal counsel to Aegean, Moelis & Company LLC is acting as investment banker to Aegean, and EY Turnaround Management Services LLC is acting as restructuring advisor to Aegean.

Read more: $300m possible fraud uncovered at Aegean Marine

Last week, an audit committee investigation found misappropriation of up to $300m of cash and assets of Aegean. The fraud involved over a dozen Aegean employees including members of senior management.

New York-listed Aegean also had approximately $200m in accounts receivable that arose from purported commercial transactions with shell companies so as to mask the fraudulent activities.

Posted 07 November 2018

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Lee Hong Liang

Asia Correspondent