(MELVILLE, N.Y.) — Bouchard Transportation Co. Inc., the nation’s largest independently-owned oceangoing petroleum barge company, on Monday announced that it and certain of its subsidiaries have filed voluntary petitions to restructure under Chapter 11 of the United States Bankruptcy Code in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Texas.
Bouchard intends to fund the Chapter 11 process with debtor-in-possession financing, which will provide the company with the necessary liquidity to maintain normal operations while it undertakes certain key operational restructuring initiatives, including to ensure the fleet is in full compliance with all operating regulations, and otherwise emerge as a stronger enterprise positioned for long-term success. As part of its operational restructuring, the company will fill several key open executive management positions. The company intends to pay employees, suppliers, and other trade vendors in full in the ordinary course.
Bouchard has appointed Mark Berger of Portage Point Partners LLC to serve as chief restructuring officer during the Chapter 11 process.
Throughout this process, Bouchard aims to continue to serve its customers and trade partners and ensure the safety of its employees and fleet operations. The company will file customary first day motions that, once approved by the bankruptcy court, will allow the company to smoothly transition its business into Chapter 11.
Court filings and other documents related to the court-supervised process are available at https://cases.stretto.com/bouchard or by calling the company’s claims agent, Stretto, at (855) 923-1038 (toll-free) or (949) 236-4792 (international).
Kirkland & Ellis LLP and Jackson Walker LLP are acting as the company’s legal counsel, Portage Point Partners is serving as restructuring adviser, and Jefferies LLC is acting as investment banker.
Founded in 1918, the company’s first cargo was a shipment of coal. By 1931, Bouchard acquired its first oil barge. Over the past 100 years and five generations later, Bouchard has expanded its fleet, which now consists of 25 barges and 26 tugs of various sizes, capacities and capabilities, with services operating in the United States, Canada, and the Caribbean.
– Portage Point Partners LLC and Bouchard Transportation