A partner in the Restructuring Department, Robert Britton focuses his practice on representing debtors, equity owners, creditor groups and distressed investors in acquisitions, out-of-court- restructurings and chapter 11 cases. Bob has a broad range of experience across a number of industries, including media and communications, airline, retail, automotive, oil & gas and steel.
Bob’s company experience has included:
- The Restructuring Sub-Committee of the Board of Directors of Sears Holdings Corporation, 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 connection with related party transactions and the court-approved $5.2 billion sale of assets;
- Toys “R” Us, the world’s leading toy and baby products retailer, on all aspects of its global restructuring;
- rue21, inc., a fashion and specialty retailer with approximately 1,200 stores across the 48 continental states that sells young adult casual apparel and accessories, and certain of its affiliates, in their chapter 11 restructuring of over $800 million in funded debt;
- Avaya Inc., an enterprise communications systems company, and certain of its affiliates in their chapter 11 cases;
- Coldwater Creek, a specialty direct retailer of women's apparel, jewelry and accessories, in its chapter 11 cases;
- Lupatech S.A., a Brazil-based company primarily engaged in the production of equipment for the oil and gas sector, in its chapter 15 bankruptcy proceeding and notes exchange;
- Centrais Eletricas do Para, S.A., a Brazil-based power energy supplier, in its chapter 15 bankruptcy proceeding;
- Media General, a media company, in its sale of newspaper assets to and financing agreements with Berkshire Hathaway;
- Provo Craft & Novelty, Inc., a manufacturer and distributor of craft, hobby and educational products, in its out-of-court recapitalization;
- Cinram International ULC, a manufacturer and distributor of DVDs, CDs and Blu-ray discs, in its chapter 15 bankruptcy proceeding and sale of substantially all assets; and
- American Axle & Manufacturing, a manufacturer of automobile driveline and drivetrain components and systems, in its out-of-court restructuring.
Bob’s creditor experience has included:
- Certain funds managed by Neuberger Berman in connection with the out-of-court restructuring of Drive Medical, a provider of durable medical equipment;
- An ad hoc group of unsecured noteholders in connection with the prepackaged chapter 11 cases of Halcón Resources Corporation;
- An ad hoc group of holders of securities issued by Exide Technologies in connection with the recapitalization of the company, a global manufacturer of automotive and industrial batteries with operations in more than 80 countries. The recapitalization provided for the exchange or equitization of over $900 million of the company’s outstanding first and second lien indebtedness, as well as the issuance of $150 million of new superpriority secured notes;
- Silver Point Capital, as postpetition and senior prepetition lender, in the restructuring of Trident and its affiliates, the leading national provider of bedside diagnostic and related health care services, including its chapter 11 cases;
- An ad hoc group of crossover lenders to Catalina Marketing Corporation, a leading provider of personalized digital media solutions, in connection with the company’s prepackaged chapter 11 cases;
- An ad hoc committee of senior secured noteholders of Gibson Brands, Inc., an iconic American manufacturer of guitars, other musical instruments and professional audio equipment, in the company’s prenegotiated chapter 11 case, including the negotiation of a prepetition restructuring support agreement and the provision of $135 million of debtor-in-possession financing;
- An ad hoc committee of senior secured noteholders of Tops Holding LLC and Tops Markets II Corporation, a leading upstate New York-based supermarket chain with approximately 170 locations, in Tops’ chapter 11 cases;
- The ad hoc group of first lien lenders of Hercules Offshore, Inc., a global provider of offshore contract drilling and liftboat services to the oil and gas industry, in connection with the company’s chapter 11 cases;
- The ad hoc group of first lien noteholders of Roust Corporation, an East European vodka distillery, in connection with the company’s chapter 11 cases;
- Portfolio companies of Sycamore Partners as term loan lenders and a major supplier in connection with the chapter 11 cases of Aeropostale, Inc., a specialty retailer of casual apparel and accessories;
- A Chinese State Owned Enterprise in the Baha Mar chapter 11 cases;
- A sovereign wealth fund in connection with its investments in the EBX Group;
- Citicorp North America, Inc., as agent, in connection with the chapter 11 cases of Capmark Financial Group Inc.;
- Citicorp North America, Inc., as agent, and secured lender steering committee in connection with the refinancing of first lien debt of Physiotherapy Associates Inc.;
- JPMorgan Chase Bank, N.A., as agent, in connection with the Suspension de Pagos proceedings of Altos Hornos de Mexico;
- JPMorgan Capital Corporation and affiliates, as equity owners of aircraft, in connection with the chapter 11 cases of American Airlines; and
- CIT Healthcare LLC, as agent, and secured lender steering committee in connection with the chapter 11 cases of Church Street Health Management, LLC.
BANKRUPTCY-RELATED M&A EXPERIENCE
Bob's distressed investor experience has included:
- The Chatterjee Group, a strategic investment holding company, and Rhône Capital in their $2.725 billion stalking horse bid for the Lummus Technology, a New Jersey-based company engaged in technologies in the hydrocarbon industry and a division of McDermott International, Inc., in connection with the company’s chapter 11 case;
- Mortgage Assets Management, LLC and its affiliate in connection with the acquisition of Ditech’s reverse mortgage business, Reverse Mortgage Solutions,, pursuant to a sale under a plan of reorganization;
- The Children’s Place Inc., in connection with its acquisition of trademarks and other assets of Gymboree pursuant to section 363 of the Bankruptcy Code;
- BayWa A.G. in connection with the acquisition of substantially all assets of Martifer Solar USA pursuant to section 363 of the Bankruptcy Code;
- Intellectual Ventures in the acquisition and licensing of Eastman Kodak Company’s digital imaging patent portfolio pursuant to section 363 of the Bankruptcy Code; and
- A consortium of lenders in connection with the provision of acquisition financing for the Indiana Toll Road.
Bob advised an ad hoc committee of senior secured noteholders in the successful chapter 11 reorganization of Gibson Brands, Inc., which was recognized as Turnaround Management Association’s 2019 “Mid-Size Company Transaction of the Year” and Private Debt Investor’s 2018 “Distressed Deal of the Year.”
Bob is a frequent contributor to a number of industry publications, including the Harvard Business Law Review, Bloomberg Law Reports – Bankruptcy Law, New York Law Journal and The Bankruptcy Strategist. Bob served as an author of the University of Illinois Law Review.