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Pilgrim's Pride to emerge from bankruptcy

The US Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Texas has approved the amended joint plan of reorganization of Pilgrim's Pride and 6 of its subsidiaries that are debtors and debtors in possession (the Debtors) in the Chapter 11 cases pending before the court.

Following a court hearing held on 8 December in Ft. Worth, Judge D. Michael Lynn entered an order confirming the amended plan of reorganization, paving the way for the Debtors to exit bankruptcy later this month. Pilgrim's Pride said that it expects to emerge from bankruptcy before the end of December.

"This is a proud day for everyone at Pilgrim's Pride who has worked so hard over the past year to restructure our business," said Don Jackson, president and CEO, after the court hearing. "The past 12 months have been filled with tremendous challenges and unprecedented opportunities. There have been a lot of tough, painful decisions made about the future of this company, yet our employees have joined together to create a new market-driven organization that is clearly focused on serving our customers."

In September, the Debtors filed a joint plan of reorganization and related disclosure statement with the court. Under terms of the joint plan of reorganization, Pilgrim's Pride has entered into an agreement to sell 64% of the new common stock of the reorganized Pilgrim's Pride to JBS U.S.A. for US$800 mln in cash. The completion of the transaction is subject to the closing of an exit facility for senior secured financing in an aggregate principal amount of up to $1.75 bln, certain regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions.

Natalie Berkhout

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