Creditors oppose IPI request for debtor financing

Creditors oppose IPI request for debtor financing

The committee of IPI unsecured creditors says the casino operator has provided limited and vague information about the lender.

Northern Mariana Islands.- The committee of Imperial Pacific International (IPI)’s unsecured creditors has filed a supplemental opposition to the final approval of the company’s request for debtor-in-possession (DIP) financing for the remaining US$6.6m of a US$7m loan.

IPI has secured a US$7m loan from a Hong Kong-based institution, but court approval is necessary to prioritise this in the event IPI’s restructuring fails and assets need to be liquidated to pay creditors. During a May 30 hearing, the court allowed an interim advance of US$400,000 from the lender, Loi Lam Sit, but stressed the need for IPI to address several concerns before final approval.

The committee argues that IPI has not provided enough information to prove the loan is necessary and that the lender is acting in good faith and that the revised loan agreement addressing court concerns has not been presented. It also said there was a lack of transparency regarding the lender’s identity and relationship with IPI.

The committee said most of the US$6.6m is intended to pay the Commonwealth Casino Commission (CCC) and the CNMI Treasury based on assumptions of settlement agreements that do not exist.

IPI currently owes the CNMI over US$62m in licence fees and more than US$17.6m in regulatory fees for the years 2020 through 2023: US$79.6m in total. During a meeting with commissioners, IPI director Howyo Chi said that IPI wanted to negotiate the reinstatement of its casino licence should it get approval for DIP funding.

They argue that final approval of the loan is premature and could harm the estate’s general unsecured creditors. Given these concerns, the committee suggests that IPI seek alternative funding sources and develop a reorganization plan before considering additional DIP financing. A hearing in the US District Court for the NMI is scheduled for June 21.

See also: IPI to be delisted from the Hong Kong Stock Exchange

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Imperial Pacific International