Industries

Energy, Power & Infrastructure

The fluctuations in energy commodity prices over the last five years have been likened by some to parallel a survey of Charles Dickens novels.

Bleak House (2015-2017). As oil fell to below $40 a barrel, a panoply of bankruptcies roiled the sector.

Great Expectations (2018). A sense of optimism as crude prices began a slow 12-month recovery to reach over $70/barrel by October 2018.

A Tale of Two Cities (late 2018 – present). Prices have remained in a fairly tight range between $50 and $65/barrel. Investors are now viewing the current pricing landscape as the New Normal. The companies that are operating efficiently in the right basins and not spending in excess of their operating cash flow are surviving. Those still hoping for a higher price environment find themselves in serious need of restructuring solutions.

The oil and gas price environment also has impacted the power sector, where power prices are directly correlated with natural gas prices. The downturn has affected power generation assets (especially renewables such as biomass) as well as the coal mining sector, which is in the midst of a significant downturn.

SCP’s team of energy sector professionals have real time expertise they bring to each client engagement and respond quickly and act dependably to find solutions to liquidity, financial, operational and restructuring issues experienced by their clients.


Case Studies


Energy, Power & Infrastructure Industry Team Members

Roger Gorog

Senior Director

Christian Sorensen

Senior Director

Bob Riiska

Managing Director

Bill Partridge

Managing Director

Curt Kroll

Partner

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Roger Gorog

Senior Director

Roger Gorog, a Senior Director at SierraConstellation Partners, provides operational and financial advisory services to underperforming companies and companies in transition. His experience includes in- and out-of-court restructurings, business cost rationalizations, operational turnarounds, interim management, and transaction advisory services. Roger has experience across a variety of industries including, Aerospace & Defense, Business Services, Construction, Consumer Products & Retail, Energy, Financial Services, Food & Agriculture, Healthcare, Manufacturing, Real Estate, and Transportation & Logistics.

Before joining SCP, Roger was a Director at Alvarez & Marsal in their Healthcare Group where he worked on several large bankruptcy cases and numerous out of court restructurings. Prior to A&M, Roger worked in public accounting at Deloitte & Touche where he worked on financial statement audits of various corporations, both public and private.

Roger received his bachelor’s degree in economics and accounting from Claremont McKenna College and his Master of Business Administration (MBA) from The Peter Drucker School of Management at Claremont Graduate University. He is licensed as a Certified Public Accountant (CPA, inactive) and a Certified Insolvency & Restructuring Advisor (CIRA). He is an active member of the Association of Insolvency & Restructuring Advisors (AIRA) and the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA).

  • Interim CFO to a food manufacturer facing serious operational issues after losing its largest customer. He successfully reduced operating expenses and cash burn while negotiating with major vendors and the Company’s lender to extend their runway.
  • Officer for a leading cancer research institute where he was responsible for all finance and accounting related activities during a Ch. 11 bankruptcy and associated sale.
  • Financial advisor to large retail chain facing serious liquidity and liability issues. Communicated with all constituents, negotiated landlord concessions, and managed cash while we prepared for bankruptcy filing and associated liquidation sales.
  • Served as a financial advisor to a national ambulance company through a prepacked Chapter 11 bankruptcy that reduced balance sheet obligations by $350 million.
  • Financial advisor to an oil and gas E&P company where we successfully sold assets to strategic buyers, providing needed liquidity to maintain go-forward operations and successfully repay lenders and creditors.
  • Lead a due diligence assessment of a target company for a private equity firm that led to a successful transaction of medical information services provider. After the acquisition, he was further retained to assist in developing the integration plan, including development of various strategic initiatives to improve overall financial performance.
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Christian Sorensen

Senior Director

Christian Sorensen, a Senior Director at SierraConstellation Partners, provides operational and financial restructuring and advisory services to both underperforming companies and companies in transition. He has experience with in- and out-of-court restructurings, operational turnarounds/improvement, balance sheet restructurings, debt and equity capital raising, mergers and acquisitions, divestitures, and conducting financial modeling and forecasting.

Christian has experience in a variety of industry verticals, including: aerospace and defense; agriculture; automotive; business services; consumer; food and beverage; healthcare; gaming, lodging and leisure; industrial and manufacturing; media and entertainment; oil and gas; restaurants; retail; technology; and transportation and logistics.

Prior to joining SCP, Christian worked at Sun Capital Partners, an operationally-focused middle-market private equity firm that invests in companies that are operationally challenged, experiencing an industry or business transition, undergoing a corporate divestiture, or managing rapid growth, with over $9 billion of capital under management. At Sun Capital Partners, Christian focused on analyzing control equity investment and divestiture transactions, and actively worked with executive management teams to drive performance improvement of portfolio companies. Prior to Sun Capital Partners, Christian worked at the investment bank Imperial Capital, where he focused on restructuring, financing, and M&A transactions.

In 2019, Christian won the M&A Advisor’s Annual Turnaround Award for Restructuring of the Year of between $25-$50 million for his work with the Cranberry Growers Cooperative.

In 2021, Christian received the M&A Advisor’s Emerging Leader Award, which recognizes leading M&A, financial and turnaround professionals who have reached a significant level of success while still under the age of 40.

Christian holds an Honors Business Administration degree from the Richard Ivey School of Business at the University of Western Ontario, where he graduated with Distinction.

  • Financial advisor and part of team that served as Chief Restructuring Officer to cooperative of cranberry growers, which successfully implemented a Chapter 11 Plan of Reorganization. SCP's solutions identified and implemented operational changes to reduce costs by over 20% and improve production yields by over 10%, while providing secured lenders full recovery. The transaction also received a Turnaround Award by The M&A Advisor for restructuring of the year.
  • Financial advisor and part of team that served as Chief Restructuring Officer to agriculture and commodities company during its Chapter 11 bankruptcy restructuring. Executed an orderly sale of all inventory, monetized certain contract assets, and sold individual operating facilities via court-approved Section 363 asset sales to maximize recoveries.
  • Financial advisor to consumer packaging business with over $140 million of indebtedness following events of default. Developed and implemented cash management solution, identified operational changes to reduce working capital accounts and increase cash conversion, and provided strategic review of alternatives.
  • Financial advisor to diversified manufacturing company with prior year revenue of over $700 million, including developing plant idling plans and identifying and implementing operations changes to reduce quarterly cash burn by over $5.0 million, while achieving a successful refinancing.
  • Worked with leading global manufacturing company on key operational enhancement initiatives to generate over $30 million of EBITDA improvement, and sell non-core assets.
  • Led approximate $100 million acquisition of North American manufacturing company. Worked with executive management teams to identify cost savings and synergies across various departments to enhance EBITDA by approximately 50%.
  • Evaluated in- and out-of-court restructuring alternatives to maximize shareholder value for an aerospace company. Negotiated senior debt purchase, and subsequent stalking horse purchase agreement and credit bid in a Chapter 11 §363 asset sale.
  • Closed over $7.0 billion of restructuring, financing and M&A transactions.
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Bob Riiska

Managing Director

Robert O. Riiska, a Managing Director at SierraConstellation Partners, has over 25 years of turnaround and advisory experience, including serving in interim senior management capacities for clients and performing numerous value-added consulting assignments. Clients have included multigenerational family businesses, sponsor-backed roll-ups and large publicly traded corporations.

Mr. Riiska is a Certified Turnaround Professional (CTP), Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and Chartered Global Management Accountant (CGMA). He received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Economics from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, and an M.B.A. in Finance and Marketing from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.

Mr. Riiska serves on the boards of several leading industry associations including the Executive Committee of the Turnaround Management Association’s Southern California Chapter, the Advisory Board of the American Bankruptcy Institute’s Bankruptcy Battleground West and as a Secured Finance Network member director.

In 2019, Mr. Riiska received the Turnaround Atlas Award for his work as Chief Restructuring Officer of LORAC Cosmetics prior to joining SCP in 2018.

Mr. Riiska’s recent engagements have been in diverse industries, including automotive dealerships, transportation, furniture manufacturing and retailers, apparel, mining, cryptocurrency lending, nonprofits, consumer products, restaurants and industrials.

  • Served as CRO of a gold mine located in the Southwest U.S., spearheading out-of-court restructuring efforts which led to a successful sale.
  • Served as financial advisor to a manufacturer and distributor of commercial office furniture, negotiating a forbearance agreement which would give the company sufficient operational runway to recover from the issues mainly caused by the pandemic.
  • As CRO of a prestige cosmetics company based in Los Angeles, oversaw all aspects of day-to-day operations, including directly interfacing with large national retailers and suppliers, and developing and executing liquidation strategies for excess inventory, while also coordinating successful sale efforts.
  • As financial advisor to a consumer packaging company, negotiated a new financing solution to provide liquidity to maintain core operations and pursue growth initiatives, while also achieving a successful sale of one of the divisions in an expedited timeframe.
  • As financial advisor to a $500 million long-haul trucking company, developed a successful turnaround plan and convinced the lenders to provide a significant structured loan overadvance to facilitate execution of the plan.
  • Served as financial advisor to a $300 million family-owned grocery wholesaler and developed a comprehensive turnaround plan to return the business to profitability.
  • Served as CRO of a $900 million publicly-traded staffing company with over 30,000 temporary employees. Successfully sold several business units after a massive tax fraud related to an affiliated company had been discovered.
  • Acted as Financial Advisor to one of the largest manufacturers of recreational vehicles while it operated in Chapter 11, leading to a successful asset sale.
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Bill Partridge

Managing Director

Bill Partridge, a Managing Director at SierraConstellation Partners, has over 25 years of corporate finance, restructuring and capital markets expertise, across multiple industries including technology, biotech, media, energy and construction. Since joining SCP, Bill has worked closely with management teams, boards of directors, and stakeholders through many complex situations, leading them to successful results.

Prior to SCP, Bill spent several years as an interim executive and turnaround consultant taking on many unique and challenging engagements for private companies throughout the U.S.

Bill’s experience also includes leadership roles in private equity, banking, and as management at several operating businesses including Suntech, where he worked on its successful restructuring. His private equity and banking experience includes JP Morgan Partners, Credit Suisse and ABN AMRO Bank.

Bill’s work has yielded positive outcomes and earned him several recent industry awards:

  • In 2022, Bill was recognized in Global M&A Network’s 9th annual list of Top 100 Restructuring Professionals.
  • In 2022, Bill won the 14th Annual Turnaround Atlas Awards under the category of Private Equity Acquisition Deal of the Year.
  • In 2021, Bill won the 15th Annual M&A Advisor Turnaround Award under the category of ‘Information Technology Deal of the Year’ for his work with Wave Computing.

Bill received a BBA in Finance from the Mendoza College of Business at the University of Notre Dame and an MBA from the Marshall School of Business at the University of Southern California.

  • Financial advisor to the board of Embark Technology, Inc, a publicly traded autonomous trucking software company sold to Applied Intuition.
  • Financial advisor to board and CEO team leader for IT services and solutions provider based in Canada and US.
  • Financial advisor to board of a data center and fiber to the home outsourced service provider.
  • Financial advisor to board and Trustee to Debtor in Chapter 11 of publicly traded bio-pharma company, Zosano Pharma Inc.
  • Financial advisor in sale of private equity backed healthcare AI driven SaaS provider JVION to health analytics company, Lightbeam.
  • Financial advisor to Weldmac, a steel fabrication company, in its successful sale to TriMas (NASDAQ: TRS).
  • CRO team leader for business services company, Metco, in accelerated private sale process.
  • CRO team leader for Wave Computing, Inc. Chapter 11 reorganization. Debtor is a Silicon Valley based fabless semiconductor and AI technology company that owns MIPS IP core technology. Successfully orchestrated a plan of reorganization that provided liquidity for new product growth, while satisfying allowed creditor claims.
  • As interim CFO at a private B-corporation, improved liquidity through refinancing and the securitization of $40 million capital lease financings funded by a consortium of family offices and non-bank lenders.
  • Served as interim CFO at renewable energy company during refinancing and entry into foreign market. Bill led the expansion of the finance and accounting departments and successfully structured and raised corporate capital and off-balance-sheet project financing.
  • Financial advisor to rebar fabrication and construction company.
  • Financial advisor to stakeholders in a discount grocery store chain.
  • Financial advisor to board of a data center and fiber to the home outsourced service provider.
  • Represented debtor in restructuring of $2 billion multinational manufacturing company with headquarters in China.
  • Prior member of general partnership managing $360 million portfolio of private equity investments in technology companies.
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John Halloran

Director

John Halloran, a Director at SierraConstellation Partners, provides interim management and operational and financial advisory services to underperforming companies and companies in transition. He leverages a growing track record at SCP and prior experience as a management consultant and private equity investor to help middle-market companies navigate through difficult business challenges. His experience includes exposure to various industries, such as pharmaceutical/biotechnology developers, consumer-facing brands, retailers, and distributors, media & entertainment providers, and information technology services and platforms.

John’s recent work at SCP has been recognized by industry awards, including:

  • In 2023, John won the M&A Advisor’s Emerging Leader Award, which recognizes leading M&A, financial and turnaround professionals who have reached a significant level of success while still under the age of 40.
  • In 2023, John was recognized with colleagues by the Global M&A Network’s 15th Annual Turnaround Atlas Awards for the SCP team’s leadership of NewAge, Inc. in the category of Chapter 11 Restructuring of the Year (sm).

John has completed relevant professional education including the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) and Certified Insolvency & Restructuring Advisor (CIRA) designations. John is also active in several industry associations including the Turnaround Management Association (TMA), the Association of Insolvency and Restructuring Advisors (AIRA), and CFA Society New York.

Prior to joining SCP, John was an investor with Omaha Beach Capital. There, he supported management of private equity investment vehicles, with a focus on underwriting lower- and middle- market transactions. He began his career as a management consultant with Booz Allen Hamilton’s Strategic Innovation Group.

John holds a B.S. and M.S. degree in Political Science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). He is an alumnus of Chaminade High School in Long Island, New York.

  • Financial Advisor and Deputy Chief Restructuring Officer to a commercial-stage developer of branded OTC pharmaceutical products. As a Financial Advisor, analyzed cash flow assumptions, assisted the board in evaluating strategic alternatives, and conducted out of court negotiations regarding the settlement of liabilities. As Deputy Chief Restructuring Officer, facilitated negotiations to secure a stalking horse bidder, completed a sale of the company's assets through a 363 sale, and coordinated the Chapter 11 case requirements in Delaware.
  • Financial Advisor and Chief Restructuring Officer Support for a national dance events producer. Completed a review of company liquidity and business plan and assisted in negotiating a capital infusion from the senior lender to bridge the company to a sale transaction after events of default. Managed the company's cash flow and implemented cash controls on behalf of CRO and Board during the sale. The company was successfully sold to a private equity buyer in an out-of-court transaction.
  • Chief Restructuring Officer Support for the restructuring and sale of a global, publicly traded multi-level marketer of health and wellness products. Instrumental in ensuring that the company could prepare for and meet bankruptcy case requirements despite the limited budget and timeline. Key contributor on the SCP project team in their coordination of the company's finance function during the Chapter 11 proceedings in Delaware despite significant management turnover.
  • Interim CEO Support to a diversified IT services and solutions provider based in Canada and US. Assisted the CEO in overseeing company operations and communications with lenders regarding the company's capital needs in connection with a potential restructuring transaction. Oversaw the cash flow forecasting and reporting process for two independent operating entities and presented regular updates on behalf of company to lender group.
  • Chief Restructuring Officer and Liquidating Trustee Support to a wholesale distributor of beer, wine, spirits, and non-alcoholic beverages where he facilitated extensive transaction diligence for its acquisition by one of the world’s largest brewing companies and assisted the Liquidating Trustee in managing the satisfaction of all company obligations during its wind down post-close.
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Curt Kroll, a Partner at SierraConstellation Partners, provides interim management and operational and financial advisory services to underperforming companies and companies in transition. His experience includes challenging CRO roles, interim management, refinancings, distressed acquisitions and in- and out-of court restructurings. Mr. Kroll has held roles in various industries including retail, industrial manufacturing, real estate, financial services, and healthcare.

Prior to joining SCP, Mr. Kroll was the Chief Financial Officer and Chief Information Officer at Katy Industries, Inc., a publicly-traded manufacturer of consumer and industrial products with operations throughout the United States and Canada. While at Katy, he worked on numerous refinancings, acquisitions, operational integrations, and restructuring transactions. Prior to Katy, Mr. Kroll was a manager at Deloitte where we worked with middle-market and corporate clients across industries. Prior to Deloitte, he also spent 3 years in a regional public accounting firm working with middle-market companies.

In 2022, Curt won the M&A Advisor’s 16th Annual Turnaround Award (between $10mm and $100mm) for his work on the turnaround of francesca’s.

Mr. Kroll holds both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in accountancy from the University of Missouri. He is licensed as a Certified Public Accountant (CPA Inactive).

  • Served as CFO of a publicly traded-consumer product manufacturing company where he lead the company through a restructuring process that ultimately led to a return to investors through the sale of the business.
  • Served as a financial advisor to a $500 million outsourcing company through a sale process to a private equity group.
  • Served as a financial advisor for a $600 million oil and gas pipe manufacturer in a refinancing of its debt.
  • Served as a CRO to a $700 million national retail chain during its restructuring process.
  • Interim Chief Financial Officer to a national bridal retail company where he led the team post-bankruptcy to rebuild the Company’s brand image, employee morale and trust with key stakeholders including the debt holders.
  • Chief Restructuring Officer and Interim Chief Financial Officer to a national retail company where he executed a series of cost reductions and operational improvements to increase profitability despite a challenging operating environment. He also assisted with the sale of the company.
  • Was interim CFO to an 80-store candy retailer.
  • Served as a financial advisor to several clients within the healthcare industry on capital bond issuances raising over a billion dollars in capital.
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Residential Solar Installation Platform

SITUATION

  • Private equity and venture capital-backed residential solar installation platform, based in the San Francisco Bay Area.
  • Persistent difficulties related to data management and financial reporting resulted in a limited ability to forecast operational performance and cash burn.
  • Complex accounting practices led to distrust among installation partners and solar financing companies.
  • Progressively deteriorating borrowing base created significant liquidity constraints and led to an eventual default by the senior secured lender.

SCP'S SOLUTION

  • Implemented a cash flow forecast to manage liquidity on a daily basis.
  • Spearheaded a data-analytics project to track real-time business performance, allowing management and the board to make better informed strategic decisions.
  • Worked closely with management and an investment bank to re-forecast an operational and financial model in an attempt to raise additional capital or sell the company.
  • Managed negotiations with the senior-secured lender, including the debt paydown strategy.

RESULTs

  • Despite significant support from the ownership team, the continued corrosion of the core sales channel and customer base resulted in a liquidity gap that could not be covered by gains in operational efficiency.
  • SCP pivoted the company toward an orderly liquidation and worked with the senior secured lender to maximize asset value.
  • The assets of the company were eventually sold to a competitor, with the senior secured lender recovering the majority of its position.
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National Oil Field Services Company

SITUATION

  • SCP was asked by a Bank to perform an expedited assessment on the viability of a publicly-traded Colorado based, national provider of oil field services.
  • A material portion of the company's revenue was derived from services used in the drilling and completion of new oil & gas wells. It also provided other remedial services necessary in the production of existing oil & gas wells.
  • As a result of the severe commodity price declines that reduced oil & natural gas well completions by 51% in Q4 and 35% year-over-year 2015 vs. 2014, the Bank was concerned the company would experience a liquidity crisis due to full utilization of its $409 million revolver.
  • Over one weekend, SCP rallied a rapid response team with oil & gas services, operations and financial acumen to perform the assessment.

SCP'S SOLUTION

  • Public information was reviewed, contact with the company was established and information requests were issued.
  • Collaborative informational calls were held between SCP’s team and the company’s financial principles.
  • An SCP Managing Director and Director traveled to Colorado and the company headquarters during one of the state's worst snowstorms to work while another Managing Director, precluded by airport closures, participated by conference call.

RESULTs

  • SCP’s team developed factual, relevant, analytical data across business lines reflecting both company cost improvements, lapses in financial management (e.g., no-recognitional of troubling customer A/R concentrations) and identified hard asset security concerns.
  • Ten days after the commencement of the engagement, an information presentation deck was provided to the Lender with current statistics on borrowing base availability, A/R and the company's overall operational sustainability and was accepted by the Bank’s leadership.
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Energy Lending Group

SITUATION

  • Agent and Lenders loaned approximately $145 million to E&P Producer with a gas transmission subsidiary.
  • Company’s business model was to purchase divested producing South Texas oil & gas assets from major and independent oil companies, using bank financing, integrate and exploit their potential, make additional acquisitions for size and divest them to another purchaser.
  • 2017 gas price declines, coupled with a failed acquisition and declining liquidity lead to multiple loan defaults.

SCP'S SOLUTION

  • SCP was engaged by counsel to Agent to perform a thorough review of the company, its business and current financial position that included an assessment of operations, management team, oil & gas reserve studies, hedging strategies, evaluation of its business plans and underlying financial forecasts.
  • SCP conducted an evaluation of the company’s cash management processes, near-term and long-term liquidity needs.
  • SCP reviewed financial, operational and contractual matters pertaining to its gas transmission subsidiary and its relationship to borrower.

RESULTs

  • SCP determined company was relying on bank financing to close a proposed acquisition that would double its cash flow and reserves, while substantially improving the overall debt ratios. With the failure of this “Hail Mary”, inevitably, the company faced a severe fiscal crisis.
  • SCP provided the agent and bank group a comprehensive 6-point set of recommendations that included options to replace management in order to reduce overhead and excessive overhead costs resulting in cash drain, improve field operations, propose a plan to restructure debt without a Chapter 11 filing and related option, including a liquidation and wind down scenario.
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Confidential Biofuels Company

SITUATION

  • The company was a niche producer of biodiesel with capacity of 30 million gallons per year based in Alabama.
  • High feedstock costs combined with declining fuel prices drove margins down significantly.
  • Operational setbacks and increased downtime plagued the company’s profitability.
  • The firm’s equity sponsor faced significant liquidity issues following the failure of Lehman Brothers, thus limiting the amount of capital available to the company.
  • Creditors tried to force the company into an involuntary Chapter 7 liquidation.

SCP'S SOLUTION

  • Plant was shut down and staff was reduced by 80% in order to conserve capital while a thorough market analysis was conducted to determine long-term financial viability of the plant.
  • Numerous environmental compliance issues were managed with remediation projects as well as permit renewals with relevant agencies.
  • An engineering study was undertaken to determine the root cause of downtime.
  • Following these analyses, it was determined that the proper course of action was to convert the Chapter 7 to a voluntary Chapter 11 restructuring.

RESULTs

  • Company undertook a lengthy Chapter 11 process, from which it emerged successfully.
  • Several spurious claims were successfully challenged in the bankruptcy process.
  • The company’s production plant was successfully marketed as a facility that could be repurposed for other chemical processes and use as a blending and storage facility.
  • Asset was successfully auctioned off with both secured and unsecured creditors receiving distributions from the estate.
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Oilfield Services & Equipment Supplier

SITUATION

  • An established California company, supplied oilfield services and equipment for exploration and production operations in California and Pennsylvania. Undertook and completed projects in The Middle East, Nigeria and Colombia.
  • PPS relied on one major customer in PA, who when the contract was lost, severely impacted operations and regional viability.
  • SCP professionals were engaged when a working capital crunch set in motion a series of liquidity crisis, bank over-advances, and missed payments affected each aspect of operations.

SCP'S SOLUTION

  • SCP immediately intervened in working capital management of the company to attempt to triage the extensive working capital requirements to meet operational needs.
  • SCP conducted an expedited and comprehensive bi-coastal operational, financial review and business process review to determine gaps and omissions resulting in inaccurate financial reporting & forecasting.
  • A hyper accurate 13-week cash flow was developed to assess revenue, cash burn and ultimate liquidity.

RESULT

  • SCP successfully engaged PPS’ lender in potential forbearance and restructuring discussions.
  • A discussion of alternatives, solutions and potential outcomes was presented to PPS principals, including the potential for restructuring as a CA only operation with a bank forbearance, withdrawal from unprofitable and costly international operations and/or a sale under Chapter 11.
  • The principals chose to ignore SCP’s recommendations and embarked on a “hybrid” plan of their own design.
  • Within 4 months, PPS had run out of cash and was placed in a Receivership to be liquidated.