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ProfessionalsPaul M. Basta

Paul M. Basta
Partner

Tel: +1-212-373-3023
Fax: +1-212-492-0023
pbasta@paulweiss.com

+1-212-373-3023
New York

1285 Avenue of the Americas
New York, NY 10019-6064
Fax: +1-212-492-0023

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Co-chair of the Restructuring Department and a member of the firm's Management Committee, Paul Basta represents debtors, creditors and investors in a broad range of restructuring matters, including chapter 11 cases, cross-border insolvency matters, out-of-court restructurings and bankruptcy-related acquisitions. Paul has represented a diverse range of clients spanning numerous industries in some of the most complex and contentious bankruptcy proceedings in recent years. Some of Paul’s significant debtor representations have included advising Diamond Offshore Drilling, Templar Energy, Sears, Barneys, A&P Supermarkets, MoneyGram, LINN Energy, Samson Resources, Sun Healthcare Group, Charter Communications, Global Crossing, Marvel Entertainment, Reader’s Digest, Caesars Entertainment Operating Co. Inc., Kerzner International, MS Resorts, TOUSA, and Tecumseh Products, among others. Paul has extensive experience representing creditors in major bankruptcies and restructuring matters, including funds such as Bain Capital, Centerbridge, GoldenTree, GSO, H Partners, HPS Partners and TPG Partners. He has also represented numerous private equity funds in connection with their distressed portfolio companies. Paul represented the Houston Astros in connection with the Houston Regional Sports Network chapter 11 case.

Awards and Recognitions

Recognized as a Band 1 practitioner by Chambers USA, Paul has earned praise for more than a decade for being an attorney who “is among the ‘upper echelons of lawyers.’” Clients recognize that “he is an intellectual powerhouse; if there is a problem that no one has ever seen before he is the one to sit down and figure it out.” The Legal 500 lists Paul in the“Hall of Fame,” recommending him as “brilliant, but above all he relates to people and manages to create compromise from initially acrimonious situations.” The American Lawyer recognized Paul as one of their “Dealmakers of the Year” for 2020 for his work advising the independent restructuring subcommittee of the board of Sears on the retailer’s massive chapter 11 case, a deal which has also been recognized by IFLR as 2020 "Deal of the Year: Restructuring and Insolvency," and  he has been selected twice as one of Law360’s “Bankruptcy MVPs.” He was named in Lawdragon’s inaugural list of “500 Leading U.S. Bankruptcy & Restructuring Lawyers.” His representation of Charter Communications garnered recognition by the Financial Times “U.S. Innovative Lawyers Report” in 2010 and earned high praise from The Deal, which named the Charter reorganization as one of its “Deals of the Year” for 2009. Paul has also earned consistent recognition in Chambers Global, The Best Lawyers in America and IFLR1000, which has selected Paul as a leading lawyer in Restructuring and Insolvency every year since 2008.

Paul regularly lectures and publishes articles on restructuring topics. He has written for an array of notable industry publications, including New York Law Journal and Daily Bankruptcy Review, among others, and has led numerous seminars at conferences held by leading industry organizations including the American Bankruptcy Institute, Practising Law Institute, Federal Bar Council Bankruptcy Litigation Committee, Turnaround Management Association, and Renaissance American Management. Paul is a fellow of the American College of Bankruptcy and The American Bar Foundation, and a member of the Board of Directors for Her Justice. He currently teaches a course on corporate restructuring at George Washington University Law School.

COMPANY EXPERIENCE

CONSUMER AND RETAIL

  • American Color Graphics, a printing company, in its merger with Vertis through a prepackaged chapter 11 case
  • Barneys, a luxury specialty retailer, in its successful out-of-court restructuring
  • Footstar, a shoe retailer, and thousands of its store corporations in a complicated multiyear restructuring that involved an immediate shut down of the Just-for-Feet store chain, a $300 million sale of the Footaction chain to Foot Locker and a reorganization around the company’s Kmart shoe business
  • The Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company (A&P Supermarkets), an operator of 395 supermarkets throughout the U.S., in its chapter 11 cases
  • The Grand Union Company, one of the largest supermarket chains in the country, in a 60-day prepackaged chapter 11 case and, subsequently, in the wind down of its business operations
  • Leiner Health, a vitamin supplier, in its chapter 11 proceedings and the sale of its business
  • MoneyGram, a global provider of money transfer and payment services, in its consensual out-of-court restructuring
  • The Restructuring Sub-Committee of the Board of Directors of Sears, a leading retailer in the appliance, tool, lawn and garden, fitness equipment, automotive repair and maintenance retail sectors, in the company’s chapter 11 cases, including the investigation of potential claims and causes of action in related party transactions and the court-approved $5.2 billion sale of assets

ENERGY

  • Diamond Offshore Drilling, a leading provider of offshore drilling services, and 14 of its U.S. and foreign subsidiaries, in their chapter 11 cases in the Southern District of Texas, which provided for the equitization of approximately $2.1 billion in senior unsecured note obligations and the provision of over $625 million of new capital
  • Flying J Corporation, a wholesaler and distributer of petroleum products, in its chapter 11 proceeding
  • Foresight Energy, a leading producer of thermal coal based in the Illinois basin, in its prearranged chapter 11 case that reduced $1 billion of its funded indebtedness
  • LINN Energy, an independent oil and natural gas exploration and production company, and its affiliates in its chapter 11 cases
  • Longview Power, one of the largest independent coal companies in North Appalachia, and certain of its affiliates in its chapter 11 cases involving the restructuring of approximately $1 billion in funded debt
  • OGX, a Brazilian oil company, in Latin America’s largest bankruptcy
  • Sabine, an oil and natural gas company, in its chapter 11 case
  • Samson Resources, an onshore oil and gas exploration and production company, in its chapter 11 cases
  • Templar Energy, an independent upstream oil and gas company, in its prepackaged chapter 11 cases in the District of Delaware, pursuant to which the company sold substantially all of its assets under section 363 of the Bankruptcy Code

HEALTHCARE

  • Olympus Healthcare, a healthcare provider, in its out-of-court restructuring
  • PHP Healthcare Corporation, a healthcare provider, in its chapter 11 wind down
  • Sun Healthcare Group, one of the largest providers of long-term subacute and respiratory healthcare services in the U.S., in the renegotiation of hundreds of leases and the development of a consensual plan of reorganization
  • Sunrise Assisted Living, an operator of assisted living facilities for senior citizens, in its out-of-court restructuring

MEDIA AND TELECOMMUNICATIONS

  • Acterna Corporation, a maker of telecommunications testing equipment, in its $1 billion reorganization through a prearranged chapter 11 case that lasted less than six months, including the sale of non-core businesses
  • Charter Communications, the fourth-largest cable operator in the U.S., in one of the largest prearranged chapter 11 filings in history
  • ChoiceOne Communications, a competitive local exchange carrier, in its 60-day prepackaged chapter 11 restructuring
  • Cumulus Media, the nation's second largest radio company with 446 stations spread across 90 markets, and certain of its affiliates in its chapter 11 cases
  • Global Crossing, a global communications enterprise consisting of over 80 affiliated debtors operating in 27 countries and more than 200 cities worldwide, in its massive restructuring, including its sale to a Singapore buyer through a chapter 11 plan of reorganization
  • Hawaiian Telcom Communications, Hawaii’s dominant local telecommunications provider, in its chapter 11 restructuring
  • Marvel Entertainment Group, one of the nation’s largest comic and media companies, in its chapter 11 reorganization
  • Nextwave Telecommunications, owner of wireless licenses, as corporate finance counsel in multiple financings, the sale of licenses to Cingular and the transfer of licenses to Verizon through a chapter 11 plan of reorganization
  • Reader’s Digest Association, a media and publishing company, in a prearranged bankruptcy completed in six months
  • Rhythms NetConnections, a DSL provider, in its chapter 11 restructuring, including the sale of its business to Worldcom through a section 363 bankruptcy sale
  • Verado Communications, a local exchange carrier, in the wind down of its business operations
  • SunCom Wireless, a wireless provider, in its consensual out-of-court restructuring

REAL ESTATE AND HOSPITALITY

  • Caesars Entertainment Operating Company, a majority-owned subsidiary of Caesars Entertainment Corporation, in its $18.4 billion chapter 11 restructuring
  • Kerzner International, an international developer and operator of destination resorts, casinos and luxury hotels, in its successful out-of-court restructuring of more than $3 billion of indebtedness
  • Kimball Hill Homes, a homebuilder, in its chapter 11 case
  • MS Resorts, an owner-operator of five luxury resort properties, in its chapter 11 restructuring
  • Olympia & York Companies (USA), the U.S. operations of Paul Reichmann’s United States real estate enterprise, in restructuring numerous New York properties with billions of dollars in debt, including the World Financial Center, over a five-year period
  • TOUSA, a homebuilder and financial services provider, and its subsidiaries in connection with restructuring liabilities arising out of litigation involving a joint venture
  • UTGR (Twin River), Rhode Island’s largest slot parlor and casino, and its affiliates in its chapter 11 cases
  • 2 Broadway Associates, a single purpose entity owning the 2 Broadway office tower in New York, in its prepackaged chapter 11 case

TRANSPORTATION

  • Autocam Corporation, an auto parts manufacturer, in its consensual out-of-court recapitalization
  • Dura Automotive Systems, an auto systems and hardware manufacturer, in its chapter 11 reorganization
  • Hawker Beechcraft, a manufacturer of business, special mission, light attack and trainer aircraft, in its prearranged chapter 11 cases
  • Tecumseh Products Company, a manufacturer of engines, compressors and related products, in a series of restructuring and sales transactions

CREDITOR, SPONSOR AND ACQUIRER EXPERIENCE

  • Lion Capital, as secured lender and equity sponsor, in the chapter 11 cases of Alex and Ani, a customizable jewelry company
  • Affiliates of Prudential Capital Partners and Onex Falcon as petitioning creditors in the involuntary chapter 11 cases and subsequent consensual out-of-court restructuring of American Achievement Corporation, a leading publisher of yearbooks, manufacturer and direct marketer of scholastic and graduation products, and provider of graduation commencement services
  • Blackstone Group in a restructuring of its portfolio company, Frontera Generation, the operator of a 526 megawatt power plant on the U.S.-Mexican border, through prearranged chapter 11 cases in the Southern District of Texas. The company’s plan provided for the restructuring of over $1 billion in liabilities
  • Continental Grain Company and Arlon Food and Agriculture Partners in the prepackaged chapter 11 cases of CiCi’s Holdings and certain of its affiliates
  • An ad hoc group of second lien lenders of telecom company Ligado Networks in Ligado’s successful out-of-court restructuring of approximately $14 billion of liabilities and issuance of $2.85 billion of 15.5% PIK Senior Secured First Lien Notes due 2023 and $1 billion of 17.5% PIK Senior Secured Notes due 2024
  • The Carlyle Group, as a plan sponsor and post-bankruptcy new money investor in the prepackaged chapter 11 cases of Guitar Center, the world’s leading musical instrument retailer. The plan provided for Carlyle to invest up to $65 million in the company in exchange for one-third of the post-reorganization common equity
  • TPG Capital in the coordinated U.S. and Canadian restructuring proceedings for Cirque du Soleil, a world-renowned Montreal-based producer of live entertainment and circus arts shows
  • TPG Global and EIG Management Company in an out of court restructuring of their equity investment in Jonah Energy Holdings, one of the largest privately-held natural gas producers in the United States
  • An ad hoc group of noteholders in the chapter 11 cases of Intelsat S.A. and its co-debtor affiliates, operator of the world’s largest and most advanced satellite fleet and connectivity infrastructure
  • TPG Partners in the prearranged chapter 11 proceedings of its portfolio company,Crew Group, an internationally recognized omni-channel retailer of women's, men's and children's apparel, shoes and accessories. The plan provided for, among other items, the equitization of approximately $1.65 billion of secured debt
  • General Motors LLC, the purchaser of substantially all of the assets of General Motors Corp (now known as Motors Liquidation Company) (“Old GM”), in litigation in the bankruptcy court related to a proposed settlement between a trust representing Old GM and plaintiffs asserting personal injury and economic loss claims arising from ignition switch and other alleged defects in vehicles manufactured by Old GM that were recalled in 2014
  • HPS Investment Partners in all aspects of the chapter 11 cases of LBI Media, an American Spanish-language television network, and its affiliates, including in providing debtor-in-possession financing and exit financing
  • An ad hoc committee of cross-holders holding approximately 45% of PetSmart’s secured and unsecured debt in challenging certain spin transactions
  • An ad hoc committee of PIK loan lenders to EB Holdings II, the parent company of Eco-Bat Technologies Limited, the world’s largest producer of lead and lead alloys in the restructuring of approximately $2.5 billion in funded debt obligations through the company’s prepackaged chapter 11 case
  • An ad hoc group of prepetition second lien lenders in the chapter 11 cases of FULLBEAUTY Brands, a preferred brand portfolio of plus-size women's clothing, swimsuits, accessories and home goods, and certain affiliates, which restructured more than $1.2 billion of prepetition debt through a prepackaged plan of reorganization that was approved by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York less than 24 hours after the company filed for chapter 11 protection
  • GSO, Caspian, and Knighthead in the restructuring of Roust, an East European vodka distillery
  • The ad hoc committee of LuxCo noteholders in Nextel International, a mobile services communication provider
  • Lehman Brothers, as lender, in the chapter 11 case of Mirant, one of the nation’s largest energy companies
  • H Partners Management and other creditors converting their claims into ownership of Six Flags through a chapter 11 proceeding
  • Bondholders in the consensual restructuring of Ziff-Davis Media, a global digital-media company, through an exchange offer
  • Qwest Communications as stalking horse bidder to Allegiance Communications, a competitive local exchange carrier
  • Bondholders of Excite@Home, an owner of high-speed cable-modem technology, in the company’s chapter 11 case
  • FSA in constructing a multi-lateral trading program of derivative contracts
  • Dresdner Bank in the chapter 11 case of Pegasus Gold Corporation, including enforcement of derivative contracts
  • Numerous counterparties in the bankruptcy of Lehman Brothers
  • Citigroup as:
    • provider of debtor-in-possession financing to Service Merchandise, a retailer chain of catalog showrooms
    • provider of debtor-in-possession financing to Friedmans Jewelers, a U.S. company that owned and operated fine jewelry specialty stores
    • counterparty to repurchase agreements regarding mortgage-backed securities in chapter 11 case of Criimi Mae, a commercial mortgage broker
    • lender and counterparty to various repurchase agreements, including New Century, American Home and C-Bass
  • Credit Suisse as:
    • bidder for exit financing for RCN, a telecommunications provider
    • provider of exit financing to Anchor Glass, a Florida-based manufacturer of glass products
    • agent for various lenders to Healthsouth, successfully negotiating for an early out-of-court payout in full of their loan with a premium
  • Lehman Brothers:
    • in the consensual out-of-court restructuring of American Cellular, a wireless company
    • as agent to various lenders to a subsidiary of Mirant, one of the nation’s largest energy companies, in Mirant’s chapter 11 case
  • Receivables lender to Greater Southeast Community Hospital Corporation, a Washington, D.C. hospital, successfully litigating validity of the lender’s security interest

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