Richard Elman says won’t take up directorship at new Noble; Deutsche Bank confirms bid to buy bonds

Richard Elman says won’t take up directorship at new Noble; Deutsche Bank confirms bid to buy bonds

By: 
PC Lee
20/08/18, 12:46 pm

SINGAPORE (Aug 20): Richard Elman, the founder of Noble Group, will not take up the position as an executive director of the embattled commodities trader after its restructuring.

Elman’s decision not to take up the position as previously announced was due to personal reasons, said the company in a stock exchange filing on Monday, and comes days ahead of a crucial shareholder vote on its planned US$3.5 billion ($4.8 billion) restructuring.

Iceberg's Vagner slams Noble restructuring, calls securities holders to join in lawsuit

“The company and the board would like to thank Mr. Elman and acknowledge his immense contribution in founding and leading the company which during its history became the largest commodities company in Asia, a platform for the careers of thousands of people in the industry, and a Fortune 500 company,” said Noble in its filing.

Further details on the members of the board of New Noble would be announced once identified and finalised, added Noble.

Noble has been pursuing a restructuring for months as it seeks to stay afloat, address a liquidity crunch and in due course provide a return to shareholders who have watched Noble’s market value decline to about US$110 million from a peak of more than US$11 billion in 2011 partially on declines in commodities prices.

In the quarter ended June, Noble posted a net loss of US$128.3 million. This included US$94.6 million in restructuring expenses and US$74.3 million in net financing and tax.

In a separate development, Deutsche Bank on Saturday confirmed it was acting on its own to buy bonds of Noble.

“Deutsche Bank expects the tender process to increase the already high level of support for the restructuring, as any bonds acquired by the bank will be automatically committed to the restructuring,” said Sarah Stabler, vice president, communications at Deutsche Bank in Singapore, reported Dow Jones Newswires.

Noble had already secured the support of 86% of creditors, much higher than the minimum 75% it needed for the restructuring. The company needs more than half of shareholders to approve the revamp at a meeting on Aug 27.

Deutsche Bank’s offer could add more supporters to the restructuring plan, said The Wall Street Journal. The bank would also benefit as it will gain a higher share in the restructured entity with its higher bondholding being acquired at much lower costs.

The minimum purchase price is 45 cents on the dollar. The bonds recently traded between 46 and 48 cents on the dollar.

Noble’s bondholders have until Aug 24 to accept the offer.

Deutsche Bank's offer covers roughly two-thirds of the debt under restructuring, or US$2.34 billion of three separate bonds issued by Noble that are due in 2018, 2020 and 2022.

Genocide can't be good for business

SINGAPORE (Nov 19): It was only three years ago, after the watershed elections in November 2015 that saw Aung San Suu Kyi transition from democracy icon under house arrest to Myanmar’s State Counsellor and de facto leader, that Myanmar began to emerge from years of economic isolation. In 2016, the US lifted some of its economic sanctions; in 2017, there were 3.44 million tourist arrivals into the country, 18% more than the year before. Meanwhile, the Myanmar government has made considerable effort to entice foreign direct investment and spur local enterprise. It has passed new laws to mak....
Read More >>

Noble gets go-ahead for controversial restructuring plan, pays funds into court in ongoing legal suit

SINGAPORE (Nov 19): Troubled commodities trader Noble Group is moving ahead with a controversial restructuring plan that will see its investors’ shareholding significantly diluted and its creditors owning most of the company. Meanwhile, a former employee whom it sued for conspiracy to injure the company by unlawful means is expecting to be vindicated and compensated for his legal costs. On Nov 15, Noble said its restructuring plan had been sanctioned by the relevant courts and would proceed. According to its indicative timetable, the last date for trading in its shares is Nov 16....
Read More >>

Looking beyond quarterly fluctuations in ST Engineering's growth story

SINGAPORE (Nov 17): ST Engineering’s latest third-quarter results have shown improvements in profitability in three of its four key business units of aerospace, electronics, land systems and marine. In addition to the main four, there is an “others” unit, which lumps together shared services, new ventures and other related activities. It reported a loss of $7.3 million. ST Engineering’s latest third-quarter results have shown improvements in profitability in almost all its business units. The marine unit, on the other hand, suffered a 35% y-o-y drop in earnings to $12.8 millio....
Read More >>
BMW charges up an 'electrified future'

Christopher Wehner, managing director of BMW Group Asia, explains how electric cars such as the BMW