Dana Gas wins over creditors for sukuk restructuring plans

worker and offshore rig background
Updated 05 June 2018
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Dana Gas wins over creditors for sukuk restructuring plans

LONDON: The Abu Dhabi-listed Dana Gas has won the support of its creditors to push forward with plans to restructure its $700 million sukuk after a lengthy legal battle.
The Sharjah-based energy company has managed to secure 93.69 percent approval for the proposed restructuring terms, according to a filing on the Abu Dhabi bourse on Tuesday.
It only required 75 percent approval to go ahead with its proposal.
“We are extremely pleased to have received consent from an overwhelming majority of sukuk certificate holders, thus confirming the company’s belief that the proposed terms of the deal (were) fair and in the best interests of all,” said Patrick Allman-Ward, CEO of Dana Gas.
Dana Gas — which has exploration and production assets in Egypt, the Kurdistan region of Iraq and the UAE — first called for the restructuring of its debt last May, citing “continued challenges” around cash collections and a need “to focus on short to medium-term cash preservation.”
It went on to shock the market a month later by announcing its sukuk was no longer Shariah-compliant under UAE law.
This meant, the company argued, it wasn’t required to repay its debt under the existing structure.
Creditors — who include BlackRock, the world’s largest asset managers — launched legal action against Dana Gas in a case that had the potential to undermine confidence in the use of Islamic finance instruments in the region.
Dana Gas outlined its current restructuring proposal to creditors last month, and won the agreement of an ad-hoc committee of sukukholders.
Debt holders were offered the option to exit their principal investment by tendering their claims at 90.5 cents per US dollar of the face value of their holdings.
Or, if they chose not to exit, the new sukuk certificates would have a 4 percent profit rate and 3-year tenor.
As part of the restructuring agreement, members of the ad-hoc committee of sukuk holders entered into an agreement with Dana Gas for the dismissal of all pending litigation and the release of certain claims.
Dana had previously put forward a restructuring proposal in February this year which was rejected by creditors, according to Reuters reports.
This time, the company’s proposal won 90.93 percent approval from holders of the 9 percent ordinary sukuk certificate holders and 96.45 percent approval from holders of the 7 percent exchangeable sukukholders.
A general meeting of the debt holders will be held on June 13 to finalize the restructuring plan, the company said.
Dana Gas’s financial position has improved over the last year, with the firm reporting net profit of $14 million in the first quarter of 2018, an increase of 27 percent year-on-year.
The company said that it was collecting payments regularly, particularly from the Kurdistan Region of Iraq, which has helped bolster its cash reserves to $636 million.
Revenues reached $120 million in Q1 compared to $118 million in the same time period last year. Higher condensate prices helped to support revenue growth and offset a fall in production in Egypt and the UAE.


Dutch carrier KLM says it will halt flights to Iran

Dutch carrier KLM. (Shutterstock)
Updated 21 July 2018
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Dutch carrier KLM says it will halt flights to Iran

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates: Dutch airline KLM says it will halt flights to Tehran “as a result of the negative results and financial outlook” following the US withdrawal from the Iranian nuclear accord.
The airline, part of the Air France KLM group, made the announcement in a short statement on its website Saturday.
KLM said its last flight will leave Amsterdam on Sept. 22 and return on Sept. 23.
KLM ceased flights to Tehran in 2013, resuming them in 2016 after the nuclear deal was signed. That deal saw sanctions on Iran lifted in exchange for it limiting its enrichment of uranium.
In May, President Donald Trump pulled America from the atomic accord, imperiling it.
Air France resumed flights to Tehran in 2016 after an eight-year absence. The airline continues its flights.