International Assignments

Over the past two decades, as restrictions on information and product flows have declined and borders have become increasingly transparent, even relatively small businesses have found themselves engaged in cross border investments and operations. Managing off-shore operations and investments without ceding control requires patience, sensitivity and careful planning and cooperation. Kestrel principals have extensive international experience, including on-site management and disposition of troubled companies and assets.

Selected Examples
International Assignments

Greek Tanker Fleet  

  • In reaction to payment defaults 15 days after a debt restructuring, put investigative team in Piraeus Greece to assess business viability and cash flows. Identified operational misrepresentations and fraudulent overstatement of collateral appraisals.
  • Managed world-wide foreclosure actions on 49 vessels in 33 different legal jurisdictions; Reactivated 26 vessel fleet prior to disposition in order to maximize recovery values.  

European controlled Manufacturer of Industrial Electronics products  

  • Retained by management of publicly held company with plants in U.S. and France to (1) install credible cash management systems in preparation for the need to secure D-I-P financing in a Chapter 11 filing and (2) provide an Interim VP-Mfg to correct production problems.
  • Quickly identified potential operational meltdown in bankruptcy due to need for single source, long lead time, parts sourced in Asia. Convinced secured lenders to advance new funds outside bankruptcy while production was stabilized and a pre-packaged financial restructuring negotiated.  

Multi-plant Electronic Hardware Repair services provider with operations in U.S., U.K. and France.  

  • Retained as Interim CEO by Board of publicly held company after $80 million of operating losses over a two year period and defaults on secured debt.
  • Restructured operations, closed plants, reduced corporate overhead by more than 50%, sold major subsidiary; and effected merger with similar business.  

Manufacturer of high-end Kitchen Appliances  

  • Retained in Chapter 11 proceedings by secured creditors to control debtor use of cash collateral, sell business assets and negotiate settlement of major liabilities.
  • Highly contentious disputes and damage claims by Far Eastern suppliers were settled favorably to obtain control of valuable tooling. This cleared the way for a 363b bankruptcy sale of the ongoing business at an attractive price to a strategic buyer. 

Designer, Manufacturer and Importer of Women’s Wear Products  

  • After a period of rapid growth, including extending sourcing activities to over 50 countries, company lost control of purchasing, letter of credit obligations and inventories. Retained by debtor to install meaningful cashflow forecasting procedures.
  • More meaningful reporting was installed which quickly disclosed the full extent of the company’s problems and that a Chapter 11 filing was necessary. Major customers were lost as a result of financial problems and the business was eventually liquidated. 

Mexican Packaging Manufacturer  

  • In response to liquidity crisis in family owned multi-plant business, retained to develop and install cash flow and inventory management systems, improve purchasing practices and recommend organizational restructuring.
  • Cashflow was dramatically improved, debt was restructured and, later, major asset sales provided company with a large residual equity for shareholders.  

Lessor of computers, peripherals, other office and heavy-manufacturing equipment  

  • Due to company’s large operating losses and loan defaults, retained at the request of secured creditors to assume management control and sell assets; which included subsidiaries in five European countries.
  • By aggressive clean-up of lease portfolios, delivered going businesses to buyers in Europe. Proceeds greatly exceeded liquidation value with creditors paid in full. 

Computer Hardware Distributor with related Software Development operations in seven European countries.  

  • Installed as Interim Management of newly formed holding company headquartered in Frankfurt after consensual foreclosure on European subsidiaries to settle debt of U.S. parent.
  • Restructured operations, dramatically reduced corporate overhead expenses, liquidated unprofitable software verticals, made significant personnel reductions despite onerous European labor laws, and negotiated highly favorable settlements of Dutch and Belgium tax liabilities. Sold operating businesses in four separate transactions. 

Designer and importer of Electronic Games and Toys  

  • Installed as Interim CEO with concurrence of secured creditors after Chapter 11 filing; objective was maximization of proceeds from sale/liquidation of business assets.
  • Disposed of excess inventories; resolved major receivables disputes; maintained ongoing relationships with Far Eastern suppliers and customers in order to continue operations through the following Christmas season; developed reorganization plan involving sale of business as an ongoing entity. 

Mexican production of Molded Plastic Parts for consumer electronics market  

  • Retained with concurrence of secured lender to assume Interim CEO position and effect a major operational restructuring of the business.
  • Costs were reduced, a new permanent CEO recruited and debt restructured. Position as a board member was continued as a major operational turnaround was achieved. 

Audio Electronics design, import and distribution  

  • Due to large operating losses and continuing volume declines, installed as Interim CEO by equity sponsor to resolve disputes with Asian Pacific partner and prepare for a probable bankruptcy filing and liquidation.
  • Reduced operating overhead by over 50%, settled issues with partner and effected a going concern sale to a European strategic buyer. Achieved a 100% payout to unsecured creditors and an unanticipated return of equity to the shareholders.