Aberdeen-headquartered Altera Infrastructure has emerged from Chapter 11 bankruptcy, hailing a deal for the Equinor Rosebank oilfield as a “key driver”.
The firm, which has its with head office in Westhill just outside Aberdeen, entered the Chapter 11 process last year with the US courts in a bid to restructure more than $1.5bn of debt.
Chapter 11 lets firms continue trading while paying off debts, a method also taken by oilfield services firm Expro in December 2017, alongside numerous helicopter and rig operators in more recent years.
Altera, which supplies production vessels to the oil and gas sector, said it has converted more than $1bn of debt into company equity.
All-told, the new deal addresses over $1bn of company debt, $550m of secured asset-level bank debt and $400m of equity.
The firm said it had support from “substantially all” of the company’s lenders, including private equity group Brookfield Business Partners which had agreed to equitise $750m debt, in the deal which “comprehensively reprofiled” the firm’s bank loan facilities.
Altera Infrastructure, which employs more than 2,000 people globally, previously said there would be no impact on workers as part of the restructuring.
Last year Altera the firm said it had 130 employees in the UK: 44 onshore in Aberdeen, alongside nine on the Voyageur Spirit and 77 on the Foinaven FPSO – though the latter number will likely have dropped as the FPSO is now being decommissioned.
The Chapter 11 bankruptcy restructuring has “enabled” Altera to reach an agreement with Equinor for the bareboat charter of the Petrojarl Knarr FPSO for the Rosebank oilfield in the West of Shetland.
Described as the “debtors’ most significant asset”, Altera said the Equinor deal for the Knarr FPSO “as one of the key drivers in the restructuring”.
Altera said its recently-signed deal for the Knarr FPSO with Equinor for Rosebank has been enabled by the restructuring and allows the firm to “generate significant cash flows and value to the business”.
The Knarr FPSO is due to be deployed at Rosebank for nine years, with options for up to 25 years, once the field clears regulatory approvals.
The contract also allows liquidity for “substantial capex upgrades to the FPSO” – Equinor has already discussed heavy upgrades to allow the Knarr to be ready for electrification.
Chief executive of Altera Group, Ingvild Saether, said: “We are pleased to announce the consummation of our financial restructuring. Our goal was to better position Altera for growth and a sustainable future, and the restructuring has done just that.
“We are grateful for the support that our lenders and bondholders, including Brookfield Business Partners L.P., has demonstrated throughout this process. Our employees, customers and vendors are of the utmost importance to us, and we are committed to continue to develop sustainable solutions for the industry in the years ahead. We are very excited for what is to come for Altera.”
Altera, formerly part of Teekay, is focused on supplying critical infrastructure assets to its customers in in the North Sea, Brazil, and the East Coast of Canada.
The company’s fleet of 41 vessels includes floating production, storage and offloading units, shuttle tankers, floating storage and offtake units, long-distance towing and offshore installation vessels and a unit for maintenance and safety.
Although employees are not expected to be impacted by the restructuring, redundancies have been made on the Foinaven FPSO which recently arrived in Denmark for decommissioning from the namesake BP oilfield in the West of Shetland.