The St. Louis-based producer said it has reached a deal with most of its lenders tied into its $1.9 billion first lien financing facility to restructure the debt, some of which it has carried since its 2011 takeover of International Coal Group (ICG).
Arch, which missed a $90 million interest payment on its debt last month, further fueling talk of bankruptcy, has been one of the many miners weighed down by low coal prices, falling seaborne demand and increasingly strict environmental regulations.
Arch said it and “substantially all” of its wholly owned subsidiaries in the U.S. filed voluntary petitions in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Missouri. As it sifts through reorganization, officials said that mining operations and customer shipments will continue uninterrupted.
“Today’s announcement represents another significant step in our ongoing efforts to position the company for long-term success,” Chairman and CEO John Eaves said.
“After carefully evaluating our options, we determined that implementing these agreements through a court-supervised process represents the best way to solidify our financial position and strengthen our balance sheet. We are confident that this comprehensive financial restructuring will further enhance Arch’s position as a large-scale, low-cost operator.”
Eaves pointed out that the company has taken several steps to enhance operational efficiency and bolster its asset base in the time since the market downturn began.
“As a result, all of our operating segments were cash flow positive during the first three quarters of 2015. We will continue to provide our customers with exceptional service as we move through this process, while maintaining and further reinforcing our position as an industry leader in safety, environmental stewardship and productivity,” he said.
It confirmed cash holdings and short-term investments of more than $600 million as of January 11, and on January 12 it confirmed receipt of $275 million in debtor-in-possession (DIP) financing. It also was given interim approval to continue its $200 million trade accounts receivable securitization facility and granted support of Arch’s letters of credit program.
“Upon approval by the bankruptcy court and satisfaction of customary conditions, these financings, as well as the company’s existing liquidity and cash generated from ongoing operations, will be used to support the business during the restructuring process,” the company said January 11; the following day it was given approval to pay employee wages, salaries, benefits and other obligations.
Arch has set up a web site for documents and scheduled hearings related to its case at www.archcoal.com/restructuring.
Davis Polk & Wardwell is serving as the company’s legal advisor, and PJT Partners is serving as financial advisor.