Turnaround of the Year
Company with significant cross-border operations
DeepOcean Group Holding AS
The turnaround team at Trico Marine
Group (TMG), which later became
DeepOcean Group Holding AS (DOGH),
overcame complex and contentious
intercreditor negotiations to turn
around one of Europe’s most widely
recognized brands in the offshore
subsea-services industry while
preserving value for its creditors.
in April 2010 to address immediate
liquidity and covenant default issues.
The company added AlixPartners
in June 2010 at Holdco and Cahill,
Gordon & Reindel LLP in July 2010.
customer base that was extremely
concerned about the future stability
of DOGH’s European divisions.
TMG was composed of international
divisions operating in the Gulf of
Mexico, North Sea, West Africa,
and Asia-Pacific regions. The TMG
companies that operated as a towing
and supply business were known
as Holdco, and the subsea services
divisions were known as Opco.
Holdco and Opco had separate
groups of lenders and separate
collateral pools. Holdco was saddled
with about $400 million of debt,
while Opco was weighed down with
almost $1 billion of debt, of which 50
percent was debt owed to Holdco.
The turnaround team quickly developed
a strategy to stabilize liquidity, prepare
for a Chapter 11 filing at Holdco, and
develop a business plan that would
allow for the survival of the Opco
enterprise. Opco was an international
company with no U.S. customers and
few U.S. vendors. Because the customer/
vendor base knew little about U.S.
insolvency laws and had no appetite
for a formal reorganization proceeding,
the team quickly realized that the best
outcome for all Opco and Holdco
constituents was to preserve value at
Opco with a debt-for-equity swap.
Working with Opco’s advisors, Paul
Weiss and Houlihan Lokey, as well
as its Norwegian counsel, Bugge,
Arentz-Hansen & Rasmussen, the team
achieved a consensual debt-for-equity
exchange at Opco, with 99.9 percent
of all noteholders tendering their notes
for conversion, and a consensual
plan of liquidation for Holdco. The
team also negotiated a new credit
facility with the new equity holders
in DOGH, providing a significant
amount of operating flexibility for
the company while establishing a
new corporate presence in Europe.
Increasing costs, the high debt
burden, and a deteriorating operating
environment ultimately created a
liquidity crisis at TMG during the first
half of 2010. The company engaged
Evercore and Vinson & Elkins LLP
The team developed a complex,
modular financial model to generate
consolidated financial projections for
the management team and creditors.
The team also developed a consolidated
cash forecasting tool to help the
company manage liquidity during
periods of severe cash shortages.
Additionally, the team had to address
continual operating issues and a
With the liquidity crisis behind it,
DOGH executed on long-needed
capital improvements, tendered and
won previously unavailable work,
and put working capital accounts
back in line with industry norms.
With a clean balance sheet and a new
executive management team and
board of directors in place, DOGH
is well-positioned for the future.
From left to right: TMA President
Ronald R. Sussman; John R.
Castellano, AlixPartners, LLP; John E.
Mitchell, Vinson & Elkins LLP; Kevin
Lewis, Vinson & Elkins LLP; and Rob
Albergotti, AlixPartners LLP; and
TMA Chairman Mark S. Indelicato.
Not pictured: David Ying, Evercore;
Andrew Rosenberg, Paul, Weiss,
Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP; Joel
H. Levitin, Cahill Gordon Reindel LLP;
Richard Sjøqvist, Bugge, Arentz-Hansen
& Rasmussen; and Robert Dehney,
Morris, Nichols, Arsht & Tunnell, LLP.