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Insights from the Debtwire Australia Restructuring Forum

Restructuring & Insolvency
Debtwire Australia Forum 2019
Arnold Bloch Leibler (ABL) Partners Stephen Lloyd and Christine Fleer featured during panel sessions and shared insights into restructuring in the retail sector and high-profile matters including Arrium.
Debtwire is a leading provider of business intelligence and research, providing news, data and analysis on distressed debt and leveraged finance markets worldwide.

Spotlight on restructuring in retail

Stephen Lloyd moderated a session on restructuring in the retail industry. He used his experience in the recent retail insolvencies to lead a discussion with the panellists from Colliers International, Deloitte Australia and Moelis Australia. The panel explored:
  • key issues in restructuring retail businesses, such as addressing underperforming leases. The panellists noted that retailers need to be flexible in their negotiations with landlords around possible solutions to leasing issues, and should assume that landlords will take a sophisticated view as to the ongoing value of the lease to the landlord
  • some of the reasons for weak growth in the retail sector, including that consumers are becoming more sophisticated, changing their purchasing behaviour and have different expectations about their customer experience, and
  • the opportunities that online sales, in particular ‘click and collect’, present for driving foot traffic to stores.

Lessons learned from the restructure of Arrium

Alongside panellists from KordaMentha and Gilbert + Tobin, Christine Fleer discussed ABL’s role in the restructure and sale of Arrium, including the Whyalla and East Coast Steel businesses. The discussion involved:
  • revisiting the period in the lead up to the appointment
  • reflecting on the resilience of appointment processes, and
  • describing how the administration process and the deeds of company arrangement formulated by KordaMentha and ABL facilitated the sales of Arrium’s local and international businesses.

 ABL was a strategic partner of the Debtwire Australia Restructuring Forum for the third year running. The forum attracted over 150 senior delegates from across the legal, insolvency, banking, corporate advisory, accounting and funds management sectors.

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