Paul M. Basta, P.C. - Partner

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Paul M. Basta, P.C.

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New York
Phone: +1 212-446-4750
Fax: +1 212-446-4900
Overview News Events Publications

Professional Profile

Paul Basta is a partner in the Restructuring Group of Kirkland & Ellis LLP and is a member of the Firm's 15-person Global Management Committee. He represents debtors, creditors and investors in restructuring distressed companies. Paul has been recognized as a leading lawyer in Chambers USA, America's Leading Lawyers for Business every year since 2006. Most recently, Chambers USA described him as a “superstar and a ‘go-to’ for complex bankruptcy matters.” In 2013, Paul was praised as a “very effective lawyer who is practical in his approach” and was described as “incredible when it comes to court and credibility with the judges.” The 2011 edition applauded him for being "a stellar restructuring specialist," while previous editions commended him on being "extremely smart and creative" as well as "always keeping in mind what's best for the company and providing consistently good advice on extremely difficult and challenging issues." Clients recognize that he "knows how to pull together disparate views and find the right solution," that he has "one of the best analytical minds on the street" and that he's "hard working, intuitive and a great communicator." He was also recognized in the 2012 edition of Chambers Global, World's Leading Lawyers for Business. In 2012, Paul was selected as one of Law360's "Bankruptcy MVPs" for accomplishments including "successfully bringing warring parties to the bargaining table in out-of-court restructurings." IFLR1000: The Guide to the World's Leading Financial Law Firms, selected Paul as a leading lawyer in Restructuring and Insolvency every year since 2008. The 2011 edition praised him as "very creative. He loves to get into the deal and really work it. He finds angles that other people generally don't see."

Some of Paul's significant debtor representations have included Charter Communications, which was selected as one of the deals of 2009 by The Deal, The Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company, Reader's Digest Association, MS Resorts, Hawaiian Telcom, BLB (Twin Rivers Casino), MoneyGram, Hawker Beechcraft, Tecumseh Products Company, TOUSA, Leiner Health, Kimball Hill Homes, American Color Graphics, Autocam Corporation, Dura Automotive Systems, Global Crossing, Acterna Corporation, Rhythms NetConnections and Footstar.

Paul also represents numerous private equity funds in connection with their distressed portfolio companies. Paul currently represents the Houston Astros in connection with the Houston Regional Sports Network. Paul has represented and continues to represent numerous parties in the power area, including Longview Power, Flying J, OGX and Creditors of Mirant. He also represents buyers of distressed power assets.

The Legal 500: The Clients Guide to the U.S. Legal Profession has repeatedly recommended Paul as "brilliant, but above all he relates to people and manages to create compromise from initially acrimonious situations." Paul was also selected by Turnarounds & Workouts in 2008 as an "Outstanding Restructuring Lawyer" and in 2002 and 2003 as an "Outstanding Young Bankruptcy Lawyer." In addition, Paul was selected as one of The Best Lawyers in America from 2007-2014, and by Super Lawyers as a New York Super Lawyer every year from 2006-2014. He also was named by Crain's New York Business as one of the 40 "Young Rising Stars" in New York in its January 2003 issue.


Representative Matters

Electric Utility and Power Matters

Longview Power, LLC — Representing Longview Power, LLC and certain of its affiliates, including Mepco Holdings, LLC and its affiliates, in connection with their Chapter 11 cases involving the restructuring of approximately $1 billion in funded debt. Longview operates a 700 net megawatt supercritical coal fired power generation facility in Maidsville, West Virginia, and Mepco is one of the largest independent coal companies in North Appalachia. Together, Longview and Mepco operate an integrated power generation enterprise that is at the forefront of the clean coal movement.

Flying J — Represented Flying J Corporation in connection with its Chapter 11 proceeding.

Lehman Brothers — Represented Lehman Brothers, as lender, in connection with Chapter 11 case of Mirant.

Confidential — Represents confidential buyers of distressed power assets.

Automotive Restructurings

Autocam Corporation — Represented auto supplier in multiple consensual out-of-court restructurings.

Dura Automotive Systems — Represented Dura Automotive in its Chapter 11 reorganization.

Telecommunications Restructurings

Charter Communications, Inc. — Represented the fourth largest cable operator in the United States in one of the largest prearranged Chapter 11 filings in history. Charter's prearranged bankruptcy reduced debt by approximately $8 billion, or more than 40 percent. Won contested confirmation hearing.

Hawaiian Telcom Communications — Represented the state of Hawaii's incumbent telecommunications provider in its Chapter 11 restructuring. Won contested confirmation hearing.

Global Crossing — Coordinated massive restructuring of global communications enterprise consisting of over 80 affiliated debtors operating in 27 countries and more than 200 major cities worldwide. Implemented sale to Singapore buyer through Chapter 11 plan of reorganization.

Acterna Corporation — Led Chapter 11 reorganization of billion dollar maker of telecommunications testing equipment through prearranged Chapter 11 case that lasted less than six months. Coordinated sale of non-core businesses in Chapter 11.

Rhythms NetConnections — Represented rapidly deteriorating dsl provider in Chapter 11 restructuring and sold business to Worldcom through a section 363 bankruptcy sale.

ChoiceOne Communications — Represented competitive local exchange carrier in 60-day prepackaged Chapter 11 restructuring.

Allegiance — Represented Qwest Communications as stalking horse bidder to Allegiance Communications, a competitive local exchange carrier.

Verado Communications — Represented competitive local exchange carrier in wind down of its business operations.

Nextwave Telecommunications — Served as corporate and corporate finance counsel to owner of wireless licenses and coordinated multiple financings, the sale of licenses to Cingular and the transfer of licenses to Verizon through a Chapter 11 plan of reorganization.

Excite@Home — Represented bondholders of Excite@Home in Chapter 11 case of owner of high-speed cable-modem technology.

American Cellular — Represented Lehman Brothers in connection with consensual out-of-court restructuring of wireless company.

SunCom Wireless — Represented wireless provider in consensual out-of-court restructuring.

Healthcare Restructurings

Leiner Health — Represented vitamin supplier in Chapter 11 proceedings and in connection with proposed sale of its business.

Sun Healthcare Group, Inc. — Represented company and hundreds of its affiliated companies that formed one of the largest providers of long-term subacute and respitory healthcare services in the United States. Assisted in the renegotiation of hundreds of leases and developed consensual plan of reorganization.

Greater Southeast Community Hospital Corporation — Represented receivables lender to Washington, D.C. hospital and successfully litigated validity of lender's security interest.

PHP Healthcare Corporation — Represented rapidly deteriorating healthcare provider in its Chapter 11 wind down.

Olympus Healthcare — Represented healthcare provider in out-of-court restructuring.

Derivatives/Mortgage Lenders

FGIC — Represented multi-billion dollar bond insurer as lead restructuring counsel.

Lehman Brothers — Represented numerous counterparties in connection with the bankruptcy of Lehman Brothers.

New Century, American Home, C-Bass — Represented Citigroup as lender and counterparty to various repurchase agreements.

Criimi Mae — Represented Citigroup as counterparty to repurchase agreements regarding mortgage-backed securities in Chapter 11 case of Criimi Mae.

FSA — Assisted in constructing multi-lateral trading program of derivative contracts.

Pegasus Gold Corporation — Represented Dresdner Bank in Chapter 11 case of gold company and assisted in enforcement of derivative contracts.

Prepackaged and Prearranged Chapter 11 Cases and Out-of-Court Restructurings

Barneys ― Represented luxury specialty retailer with flagship stores in New York City, Beverly Hills, Chicago, Seattle, Boston, Dallas, San Francisco, Las Vegas and Scottsdale in connection with its successful out-of-court restructuring that resulted in a debt for equity conversion and new money investment that reduced Barney's long-term outstanding indebtedness from more than $590 million to $50 million.

Kerzner International ― Represented leading international developer and operator of destination resorts, casinos and luxury hotels in connection with its successful out-of-court restructuring of more than $3 billion of indebtedness. The multi-part reorganization included the restructuring of more than $2.5 billion of indebtedness in a commercial mortgage backed security structure. Under the One&Only brand, Kerzner manages seven of the top-rated luxury resort properties in the world, located in The Bahamas, Mexico, Mauritius, the Maldives, South Africa and Dubai.

Hawker Beechcraft ― Represented Hawker Beechcraft Inc., a world-leading manufacturer of business, special mission, light attack and trainer aircraft, in its prearranged Chapter 11 cases. Hawker, which listed more than $1 billion in assets and debt at the time of filing, cited market conditions and its leveraged capital structure as primary causes for the restructuring. Prior to filing, the company reached an agreement with multiple senior secured lenders and senior bondholders on a financial restructuring plan that would equitize $2.5 billion of funded debt and avoid $125 million of annual cash interest expense.

Charter Communications, Inc. — Represented the fourth largest cable operator in the United States in one of the largest prearranged Chapter 11 filings in history. Charter's prearranged bankruptcy reduced debt by approximately $8 billion, or more than 40 percent. Won contested confirmation hearing.

The Reader's Digest Association, Inc. — Represented media company in prearranged bankruptcy that was completed in six months and that exited Chapter 11 with favorable new bond financing. Won contested confirmation hearing.

Autocam Corporation — Represented auto parts manufacturer in consensual out-of-court recapitalization of the company.

American Color Graphics — Represented printing company in proposed merger with Vertis to be implemented through a prepackaged Chapter 11 case.

Moneygram — Represented company in consensual out-of-court restructuring.

Tecumseh Products Company — Represented the company, a leading manufacturer of engines, compressors, and related products, in a series of restructuring and sales transactions.

The Grand Union Company — Represented the company, one of the largest supermarket chains in the country, in 60 day prepackaged Chapter 11 case and, subsequently, in the wind down of its business operations.

ChoiceOne Communications — Represented competitive local exchange carrier in 60-day prepackaged Chapter 11 restructuring.

2 Broadway Associates — Implemented prepackaged Chapter 11 case for single purpose entity owning the 2 Broadway office tower in New York.

Ziff-Davis Media — Represented bondholders in consensual restructuring accomplished through an exchange offer.

SunCom Wireless — Represented wireless provider in consensual out-of-court restructuring.

DIP, Exit and Other Financings

Service Merchandise — Represented Citigroup as provider of debtor-in-possession financing to Service Merchandise.

Friedmans Jewelers — Represented Citigroup as provider of debtor-in-possession financing to Friedmans Jewelers.

RCN — Represented Credit Suisse as bidder for exit financing for RCN.

Anchor Glass — Represented Credit Suisse as provider of exit financing to Anchor Glass, a Florida-based manufacturer of glass products.

Healthsouth — Represented Credit Suisse as agent for various lenders to Healthsouth and successfully negotiated for an early out-of-court payout in full of their loan with a premium.

Traditional Chapter 11 Cases

Longview Power, LLC — Representing Longview Power, LLC and certain of its affiliates, including Mepco Holdings, LLC and its affiliates, in connection with their Chapter 11 cases involving the restructuring of approximately $1 billion in funded debt. Longview operates a 700 net megawatt supercritical coal fired power generation facility in Maidsville, West Virginia, and Mepco is one of the largest independent coal companies in North Appalachia. Together, Longview and Mepco operate an integrated power generation enterprise that is at the forefront of the clean coal movement.

The Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company (A&P) — Represented the company, which operates 395 supermarkets and food and beverage stores throughout the United States, in its Chapter 11 cases.

UTGR, Inc. — Represented UTGR, Inc. and its affiliates, BLB Worldwide Holdings, Inc. and BLB Management Services, Inc., Rhode Island's largest slot parlor, in their Chapter 11 cases.

TOUSA, Inc. — Represented the company, a leading homebuilder and financial services provider, and its subsidiaries in connection with restructuring liabilities arising out of litigation involving a joint venture.

Kimball Hill — Represented homebuilder in its Chapter 11 case.

Leiner Health — Represented vitamin supplier in Chapter 11 proceedings and in connection with proposed sale of its business.

Hawaiian Telcom Communications — Represented the state of Hawaii's incumbent telecommunications provider in its Chapter 11 restructuring. Won contested confirmation hearing.

Mervyns — Represented Sun Capital as stockholder and lender to Mervyns, a large retailer.

Dura Automotive Systems — Represented Dura Automotive in its Chapter 11 reorganization.

Global Crossing — Coordinated massive restructuring of global communications enterprise consisting of over 80 affiliated debtors operating in 27 countries and more than 200 major cities worldwide. Implemented sale to Singapore buyer through Chapter 11 plan of reorganization.

Footstar — Represented Footstar and thousands of its store corporations in complicated multi-year restructuring. Restructuring involved the immediate shut down of the Just-for-Feet store chain, the sale of the Footaction chain to Foot Locker for $300 million and the reorganization around the company's Kmart shoe business. The company successfully emerged following litigation with Kmart and paid all creditors in full with a significant recovery to stockholders.

Mirant Corp. — Represented Lehman Brothers as agent to various lenders to a subsidiary of Mirant in connection with Mirant's Chapter 11 case. Mirant is one of the nation's largest energy companies.

Olympia & York Companies (USA) — Assisted in the representation of the U.S. operations of Paul Reichmann's United States real estate enterprise which entailed restructuring numerous New York properties with billions of dollars in debt, including the World Financial Center, over a five year period.

Marvel Entertainment Group, Inc. — Assisted in the representation of Marvel Entertainment, one of the nation's largest comic and media companies, in its Chapter 11 reorganization.

Six Flags, Inc. — Represented H Partners Management LLC, a hedge fund managing over $700 million in assets, in their capacity as one of the largest unsecured creditors of Six Flags, Inc. where H Partners and other creditors converted their claims into ownership of Six Flags through a Chapter 11 proceeding.


Other Distinctions

English Teacher, Beijing Aeronautics Institute, Beijing, China, September 1988 - June 1989

Judicial Clerk for the Honorable Florence K. Murray, Rhode Island Supreme Court, September 1992 - August 1993


Publications

A Practitioner's Guide to Prepackaged Bankruptcy: A Primer, American Bankruptcy Institute, 2011, (co-author)

District Court Limits the Right to Credit Bid in Asset Sale Conducted Under Chapter 11 Plan, PLI, June 11, 2010

Break-Up Fee Denied for Stalking-Horse Bidder in Bankruptcy Asset Sale, PLI, June 11, 2010

For Subprime Lenders - A Primer on the Bankruptcy Code, Daily Bankruptcy Review, March 28, 2007, (co-author)

Acquisition of A "Troubled" Business: Bankruptcy and Reorganization Issues, Winter, 1999, (co-author)

Pre-Chapter 11 Planning: The Dynamics of Survival From The Perspective of the Debtor and Its Bank Creditors, September 1998 (updated 2006), (co-author)

That "Scumbled Area": Ethical Issues Facing Bankruptcy Professionals, Weil, Gotshal & Manges, 1997, (co-author)

Hot Topics in Business Bankruptcies: Venue in Corporate Cases: DIP Financing: Going Out of Business Sales and Ethical Issues, Georgetown University Law Center Continuing Legal Education, August 1997, (co-author)

Limiting the Scope of the New Value Exception, Weil, Gotshal & Manges Bankruptcy Bulletin, April 1997

An Introduction to the Bankruptcy Code, Winter 1997, (co-author)

Treatment of Partnerships in Bankruptcy, Weil, Gotshal & Manges Bankruptcy Bulletin, January 1996

Avoiding Fraudulent Transfers, January 1994, (co-author)

Derivatives

For Subprime Lenders - A Primer on the Bankruptcy Code, Dow Jones Daily Bankruptcy Review, March 28, 2007, (co-author)

Enforceability of Derivatives in Troubled Situations, September 1994, (co-author)

The Treatment of Derivatives under the Bankruptcy Code, 402 PLI/Real 231, April-June 1994 (updated 2006), (co-author)

Claims Trading

Trading in Claims: Treatment of Purchases by Insiders, New York Law Journal, January 21, 1999, (co-author)

Trading in Debt Securities: Bankruptcy and Securities Laws Implications, Chapter in Weil, Gotshal & Manges' "Reorganizing Failing Businesses," 1998 (updated 2006), (co-author)

Trading in Claims, Weil, Gotshal & Manges Bankruptcy Bulletin, October 1997, (co-author)

Bondholder's Claim is Not Automatically Assigned to Subsequent Purchaser, Weil, Gotshal & Manges Bankruptcy Bulletin, September 1996

National Bankruptcy Review Commission Materials

Enforceability of Prepetition Waivers of the Automatic Stay, Memorandum to National Bankruptcy Review Commission, March 21, 1997, (co-author)

Discharge or Release of Third Parties Under The Bankruptcy Code, Memorandum to National Bankruptcy Review Commission, October 31, 1996, (co-author)


Seminars

Building a Successful Career: Tips from the Titans, TMA NextGen, May 22, 2012

Discussion on Career Development, George Washington University Law School, April 3, 2012

Methods for Achieving Consensual Restructurings in Today's Environment, American Bankruptcy Institute's 3rd Annual Mid-Level Professional Development Program, October 28, 2011

Managing Relationships with Stressed Companies: A Lawyer's Guide to Stress and Distress 2010, PLI, June 11, 2010

Restructuring Panel, Third Annual Duke Private Equity Conference, April 15, 2009

American Color Graphics and Vertis: The First Dual Prepack Merger, Turnaround Management Association Distressed Investing Conference, January 21, 2009

American Color Graphics Case Study: The First-Ever Double Pre-Packaged Merger Bankruptcy Executed Through Chapter 11, Distressed Debt Investing and Risk Management's Navigating the Post-Subprime World, September 17, 2008

Homebuilders Part II: TOUSA, Renaissance American Management's 11th Annual Corporate Reorganizations Conference, June 20, 2008

Troubled Hedge Fund Liquidations, Tenth Annual New York City Bankruptcy Conference, May 12, 2008

The Practical Impact of the Credit Crunch, 12th Annual AlixPartners Conference, April 16-18, 2008

Complex Financial Restructuring Program, 15th Annual Southwest Bankruptcy Conference, September 6-8, 2007

Update on Autos and Auto Suppliers, Renaissance American Management's 10th Annual Corporate Reorganizations Conference, June 22, 2007

Second v. Third Circuit Precedents, American Bankruptcy Institute 7th Annual New York City Bankruptcy Conference, May 9, 2005

Telecommunications

Overview, Tension Between Bankruptcy and Regulatory Regimes, 4th Annual Telecommunications Law Conference, October 2001

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