Lehman adds creditor support, new bankruptcy plan

By @ibtimes on

Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc said it has received a wider base of support from creditors for its reorganization, and filed a new plan it hopes will help it emerge from bankruptcy and pay creditors faster.

The company said it believes it has an agreement in principle with major creditor groups on an amended reorganization plan filed in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Manhattan. This includes support from a committee of unsecured creditors, Lehman said.

The compromise is a reasonable, fair and efficient means to resolve and avoid the vexatious, multifaceted and protracted litigation and delay that might otherwise occur, Lehman said in a court filing on Wednesday.

Lehman had been the fourth-largest U.S. investment bank prior to filing for Chapter 11 protection from creditors on September 15, 2008, with an estimated $639 billion of assets.

Its bankruptcy filing remains the largest in U.S. history, and was a major trigger for the global financial crisis.

Bryan Marsal, Lehman's chief executive and a restructuring specialist, has said the company expects to distribute roughly $60 billion to creditors who have roughly $322 billion of allowed claims, equal to about 18.6 cents on the dollar.

According to court papers, a key change from Lehman's earlier proposed plan is that various sums that would have gone to creditors of several Lehman subsidiaries will instead go to unsecured creditors of Lehman's parent company.

Despite this, holders of unsecured debt from Lehman's parent would receive about 21.1 cents on the dollar, down from 21.4 cents under an earlier Lehman plan.

Some creditors, such as a group that includes hedge fund manager John Paulson, had been seeking roughly 24 cents on the dollar.

Unsecured creditors of Lehman Brothers Special Financing Inc, the company's derivatives unit, would receive 27.9 cents on the dollar under the revised plan.

U.S. Bankruptcy Judge James Peck presides over Lehman's bankruptcy proceedings. A hearing to review issues related to the plan is set for July 20, court records show.

The case is In re: Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Southern District of New York, No. 08-13555.

(Reporting by Jonathan Stempel; editing by John Wallace, Dave Zimmerman)

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