Voyager—The Auction to Come

Perkins Coie

Perkins Coie

Voyager Holdings filed a Notice of Auction with the bankruptcy court announcing an Auction* of its assets (or the assets Voyager believes it is entitled to sell). The Auction will start on September 13 in New York and promises to be anything but simple or dull. Whatever occurs and whichever bidder(s) emerge(s) successful, expect a hotly contested Sale Hearing.

An interesting aspect of bankruptcy auctions is their flexibility compared to a regular auction. Voyager has been soliciting bids on anything and everything—up to and perhaps including a bid for the whole kit and kaboodle. Qualified bidders were invited to submit offers for 100% of Voyager’s equity, all of Voyager’s assets, or some unspecified subset of the assets.

Voyager will try to secure the highest and best overall price to buy as many assets as possible. The Auction will likely open with an attempt to sell the entire enterprise as a going concern. The Auction will shift to a process of groupings of assets to see if one or more bidders could narrow (or expand) their bids to eliminate overlap and to cover any other assets.

It is an interesting process to watch as the shape of the asset pool(s) shifts and realigns with each round of bids, and the “high bid” at any given point may not be declared to be a “winner,” as it is possible that a different alignment of assets could result in an overbid. The Auction could conclude within one day or might carry over into multiple days.

While Voyager is expected to announce which Bidder(s) won the Auction, the bankruptcy judge will have the final say at the September 29 Sale Hearing. The judge will weigh the arguments about why one bid is better than another (or if there is no sale and Voyager will reorganize itself with substantially all of its assets intact).

The bottom line is that the Auction is an important step, although it may not be definitive. More fighting could be just over the horizon.

*Capitalized terms that are not defined refer to the defined terms in the Bid Procedures Order.

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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