Posts Tagged : Restructuring and Insolvency

Rodrigo Olivares-Caminal participa en el VIII Seminario Jean Monnet: “Banking solvency and sovereign solvency”

Nuestro compañero Rodrigo Olivares-Caminal, Of Counsel de Kepler-Karst y catedrático de Derecho Bancario y Financiero en la universidad Queen Mary de Londres, participará el próximo 21 de abril en el VIII Seminario Jean Monnet, organizado por la Universidad de Málaga, sobre regulación económica, competencia e integración europea.

El encuentro, titulado “Banking solvency and sovereign solvency”, abordará cuestiones relevantes en el plano comunitario relativas a los retos actuales relacionados con la deuda soberana.

Junto con Rodrigo participarán: Juana Pulgar-Ezquerra, catedrática de Derecho Mercantil de la Universidad Complutense de Madrid, George Selgin, director emérito de la Center for Monetary and Financial Alternatives, y Ana Lozano-Vivas, catedrática de Análisis Económico y quien moderará la jornada.

🗓️ Viernes, 21 de abril

🕐 10.00h a 12.00h

banking & sovereign solvency session with Rodrigo Olivares-Caminal

Kepler-Karst recognized by the Legal 500 ranking in Restructuring and Insolvency

The Legal 500 has recognized Kepler-Karst as one of the leading firms in Restructuring and Insolvency in Spain.

The prestigious international directory lists us as one of the “Firms to Watch”, and states that we have “extensive experience in the management of complex insolvency proceedings”, advising creditors and debtors, as well as acting as insolvency practitioners.

Davinia Sánchez, managing partner, and Armando Betancor, Of Counsel, have led the Restructuring and Insolvency department since its foundation in June 2020. Together they have led and participated in some of the most relevant transactions of the last years, such as the restructuring and sale of the production unit as a going concern of Room Mate Hotels, the restructuring of the companies Interfronteras and Cife Spain, and the internationally relevant case of the Petersen companies, in which Armando Betancor has acted as Insolvency Trustee.

At Kepler-Karst we could not be prouder for this recognition. Congratulations Davinia and Armando for your leadership.

Access the ranking by clicking here.

Legal 500 kepler-Karst Firms to Watch

Legal 500 Kepler-Karst ranked as one of the best in restructuring insolvency

Good job, team!

Success story: Judgment in favor of Petersen Companies in breach of contract claim against Argentina
Success story: Judgment in favor of Petersen Companies in breach of contract claim against Argentina

Our Special Situations and Insolvency and Restructuring teams have won a summary judgment in favor of the Petersen companies due to the breach of contract by the Republic of Argentina, resulting from the expropriation of Repsol’s shares in YPF—the Argentine national oil company—in a trial in New York.

The Kepler-Karst team involved in this matter included Armando Betancor, insolvency trustee since 2012 when the companies filed for bankruptcy, Rodrigo Olivares-Caminal, Of Counsel at Kepler-Karst and restructuring expert, partners Luis Barber, Eduardo Frutos and Davinia Sánchez, and consultant Guido Demarco.

“It was an arduous task that took many years, balancing two open fronts in Spain and New York. From the beginning we have set up an interdisciplinary and sophisticated team that has allowed us to get this far,” said Betancor.

Success story: Judgment in favor of Petersen Companies in breach of contract claim against Argentina

Thanks to the diligent actions and an innovative strategy proposed by Mr. Betancor, the insolvent companies were able to pursue the lawsuit against Argentina in New York despite their insolvent condition. Everything was possible thanks to a litigation funding agreement that enabled the insolvent companies to meet the litigation costs in the US for almost 10 years.

In this regard, Betancor commented: “[w]e have been at the forefront from the beginning, with the litigation funding agreement that allowed us to defray the costs of the litigation, and to get this far. We are facing a historic ruling that will have international repercussions”.

The Judgment

After almost 10 years of judicial conflict, Judge Loretta Preska, of the Southern District of New York, ruled in favor of the Petersen companies after understanding that Argentina breached YPF’s bylaws by taking control of 51% of the company’s shares without having launched a public tender offer (PTB) for the shares of the remaining shareholders, as stated in Articles 7 and 28 of YPF’s bylaws.

For this reason, the judge ruled that Argentina must indemnify the Petersen companies for the damages caused as a result of the breach of contract. Now damages have to be determined, and, according to the criteria to be established, will range between $10 to $20 billion. In order to determine the exact amount, the judge must determine the date when Argentina took control of YPF’s shares.

On the other hand, the judge ruled that YPF did not breach the bylaws, since the bylaws did not impose on the company the obligation to take actions to restrain the Argentine Republic.

Should Argentina wish to appeal the decision, it will have to submit financial guarantees to the court, which puts the country in a very difficult position.

Armando Betancor, together with his team at Kepler-Karst, has led and managed the judicial process from Spain in coordination with three American and with four Spanish law firms representing the companies and the different parties involved in the U.S. and local courts proceedings.

2022, a year in review

Few days before saying goodbye to 2022, we want to remember the moments that have shaped this year: we have grown professionally and as individuals, we have been recognized for our work and achievements, we have participated in high-level events and, of course, the Reform of the Insolvency Law has become our new reference book.

We cannot thank you enough for supporting us during this time. Thank you, thank you and thank you!

It has indeed been a memorable year; will you join us in remembering it?


Transaction highlights

Our advice for the reorganization and sale of Room Mate’s production unit to Angelo Gordon and Westmont Hospitality Group has been a milestone this 2022. The Kepler-Karst team involved in this transaction was led by Armando Betancor, with the participation of Luis Barber, Davinia Sánchez de la Cruz, Rodrigo Olivares-Caminal and Ana Carpintero, and was assisted by Guido Demarco.

At the beginning of the year, thanks to our advice on commercial matters, the Beverly Park hotel in Maspalomas, in the Canary Islands, found a new owner. Thanks to this, the hotel has been able to continue operating, thus safeguarding all the jobs.

We are currently helping several companies to get out of financial distress situations, and we are restructuring two companies, one in the services industry and the other in the gaming sector, whose operations amount to 2 and 8 million euros respectively.

Oh, we have grown!

Daniel Gómez and María Bartle joined the Madrid office as partners this September to strengthen the Restructuring and Insolvency areas. In February, Víctor Miranda and Antonio Montesdeoca joined the Canary Islands office to consolidate the Economic Criminal and Administrative departments there, respectively. We have expanded our team in a big way.

With so many great additions, we have outgrown our Madrid office and this summer we have expanded it. In addition, we have moved our London Desk, headed by Rodrigo Olivares-Caminal, and it is now located in the Heron Tower, in the City of London.


Our Of Counsel Armando Betancor has, once again, been recognized by the prestigious directory Chambers & Partners in the area of Restructuring and Insolvency -“he is a force of nature”, says the ranking about him. On top of this, he has made his debut in the Leaders League ranking of this same specialty.

Leaders League also recognized Kepler-Karst as one of the most outstanding firms in Restructuring and Insolvency, and highlighted Daniel Gómez, partner of the practice, too.

Moreover, during this 2022, we have been able to boast the recognition awarded by Cinco Días and Statista, which recognized us as one of the best law firms in 2022 and as one of the best firms in Spain in the area of restructuring and insolvency. The ranking was created based on the recommendations of lawyers themselves and with a jury made up of fellow professionals. We are so proud!

Our knowledge contributions

The bankruptcy moratorium is over, we have a new flagship law –the Reform of the Consolidated Text of the Spanish Insolvency Law– which we have analyzed non-stop (Cinco Días, Expansión, El Confidencial, Capital Radio), we have discussed the most relevant issues in current business affairs, and we have collaborated with Universities (Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Queen Mary University of London, San Pablo CEU).

We also had time to socialize and get to know each other better thanks to several events. We highlight these: We sponsored the International Series “Debt and Finance Post-Covid”, organized by the Complutense University of Madrid and Queen Mary University of London, as well as one of the talks in the series “Good Practices in Sovereign Debt Recovery”, organized by the OECD and Queen Mary University of London, we participated in the 17th Congress of Lawyers of Malaga thanks to Eduardo de Urbano, of Counsel and coordinator of the area of Economic Criminal Law, and we have not stopped supporting good causes.


Undoubtedly, a memorable year


Rodrigo Olivares-Caminal for Reuters on Ghana’s debt restructuring plans

Rodrigo Olivares-Caminal, Of Counsel at Kepler-Karst and Professor of Banking and Finance Law at Queen Mary University of London, commented for Reuters on Ghana’s debt restructuring plans as it faces a debt overhaul.

Regarding the $400 million guarantee offered by the World Bank to Ghana to provide extra security if the country failed to pay investors, Rodrigo said: “The guarantee was designed to kick in when there is a temporary liquidity issue, not an structural debt problem.”


Rodrigo is an expert in restructurings and sovereign debt, and has been involved in the major corporate, bank and government restructurings globally.

Read the full article here. 


Contractual default, credit event and credit rating default, Rodrigo Olivares-Caminal explains the difference

A contractual default, a credit event and a credit rating default are three different albeit related concepts,” said our Of Counsel Rodrigo Olivares-Caminal, expert in debt restructuring and sovereign debt, in an article published by Reuters, in which he comments on Ukraine’s debt crisis. In a distress situation, it is important to distinguish among them.

A contractual or legal default occurs when the debtor breaches the event of default clause included in its external obligations and does not cure the situation before the elapse of the grace period, if any.

A credit event is what ISDA will consider as a trigger for a CDS repayment. The following are considered typical credit events: (1) failure to pay; (2) repudiation/moratorium; and/or, (3) restructuring (i.e. reduction of interest or principal payable, postponement or deferral of payment of principal or interest, subordination of the relevant obligation, etc.).

Credit rating agencies can assign a “default” (all rating agencies) or “selective default” (not applied by Moody’s). If this happens, it does not necessarily mean that the sovereign is either under default on contractual terms or has triggered a credit event. The main relevance of a credit ratings’ rating of ‘default’ or ‘selective default’ is the behaviour that it will trigger in the market.

Ukraine has proposed to defer payments on its international bonds for 24 months to avoid default. The country’s creditors vote this week on this government proposal to decide whether to back it or vote it down. In the article published by Reuters, Rodrigo explains that the two-year moratorium on external debt payments would allow Ukraine to avoid a contractual or legal default, as any amendment on the bonds’ terms would have the creditors’ backing.


Read the full text and Rodrigo’s comments of Ukraine’s proposal here

Rodrigo Olivares-Caminal on Ukraine’s debt crisis

Ukraine has proposed to defer payments on its international bonds for 24 months to avoid default. The country’s creditors vote this week on this government proposal to decide whether to back it or vote it down.

Our Of Counsel Rodrigo Olivares-Caminal, expert in expert in debt restructuring, comments on this proposal for Reuters.

Rodrigo explains that the two-year moratorium on external debt payments would allow Ukraine to avoid a contractual or legal default, as any amendment on the bonds’ terms would have the creditors’ backing.

In the article, Rodrigo algo explains that “a contractual default, a credit event and a credit rating default are three different albeit related concepts,” and that “incurring any of the three doesn’t mean that the other two will trigger.

Ukraine faces a $5 billion monthly financing gap and liquidity pressures following Russia’s invasion on Feb. 24. Time is precious: the country has a $1 billion bond maturing on Sept. 1.

Read the full text here

Kepler-Karst, a Leading Restructuring and Insolvency Law Firm Specializing in Complex Matters, Advises Room Mate on Restructuring and Sale



The pre-packaged sale and reorganization of Room Mate, S.A. was approved in less than a month within the framework of a reorganization tool under the Spanish bankruptcy act.


Madrid, Spain | July 28, 2022. Kepler-Karst (the “Firm”), a leading law firm specializing in restructuring and insolvency proceedings, has advised Room Mate, S.A. (“Room Mate” or the “Company”) on its reorganization and the sale of the business as a going concern.

This transaction involved a pre-packaged reorganization and sale of Room Mate’s hotel business and its management companies to Angelo Gordon and Westmont Hospitality Group.

Room Mate filed for reorganization on June 24, 2022, and the Commercial Court No. 14 of Madrid recently approved the transaction. The legal strategy deployed by Kepler-Karst supported the expedient execution of this transaction, which was necessary given the highly distressed financial situation of the Company, as the Firm developed a solution for the continuity for the hotel business along with the request for a voluntary reorganization.

Armando Betancor, leader of the Kepler-Karst team that worked on this transaction, stated, “The success of this strategy was due in large part to the pre-planning process, which allowed us to provide the necessary guarantees so that the Insolvency Practitioner and the Judge could act quickly and on solid ground. As experts in restructuring and insolvency proceedings, our role has been and continues to be to seek solutions and viable alternatives that help businesses in situations like this one.

Some key steps in the pre-planning process included (1) the identification of the best possible buyer of the business unit – which included a commitment to preserving the jobs of the Company’s current workforce – through a process carried out by Kroll, an independent and highly reputable firm in the market; and, (2) once the buyer was identified, Baker Tilly – a leading international accounting firm – valued the business unit as a going concern, as well as what it could have been in a liquidation scenario, to verify that the offer received was reasonable within the expected parameters. All of this contributed to ensuring the legal security and independence of the process.

Luis Barber, partner at Kepler-Karst, said, “This is a clear example of how bankruptcy proceedings, filed in a timely manner and along with a well-prepared offer for the purchase of the business unit, can support the continuity of a company.”

 Davinia Sanchez, partner at Kepler-Karst, added, “We could not be prouder of the work done here and of having helped a business in a sector that has faced pandemic-related challenges in recent years. The pre-planning work, the identification of potential buyers, and the development of a valuable and independent proposition were key.

Rodrigo Olivares-Caminal, Counsel at Kepler-Karst and expert in financial distress situations, stated, “This transaction demonstrates the importance of knowing the global legal context. In this situation, the process was aligned with the tools available in the best global insolvency legislations, such as the schemes of arrangement or the pre-packaged administrations in the UK or the sub-rosa sale in the U.S., allowing for an expedited sale of the business as a going concern.


The Kepler-Karst team that worked on this transaction was led by Armando Betancor, together with Luis Barber, Davinia Sánchez de la Cruz, Rodrigo Olivares-Caminal, Ana Carpintero and Guido Demarco.

Rodrigo Olivares-Caminal on Russian Debt Default

Rodrigo Olivares-Caminal, Of Counsel and Professor of Banking and Finance Law at Queen Mary University of London, comments on Russia’s recent default on its foreign debt.

In this article, Rodrigo, a legal expert, and Nasir Aminu, an economist at Cardiff Metropolitan University, explain the significance of the default and its consecuences. For Rodrigo, “the full impact of the default remains uncertain until the global financial market gets clarity” regarding some issues, but, in any case, “those issues would be subject to interpretation by a court of law“.

Read the full comment on The Conversation or at the World Economic Forum’s website.



Our Experts on El Confidencial about the ICO and the Wave of Restructurings that is Coming


Our Managing Partner Davinia Sánchez and our Of Counsel Rodrigo Olivares-Caminal spoke with El Confidencial about the wave of restructuring expected, the bankrupcy moratorium and the ICO credits, which are endorsed by the Administration.

For our experts, there are doubts about the ICO credits due to the fundamental role they play in any restructuring. They are a crucial element when approving creditors’ agreements within the framework of insolvency proceedings to avoid liquidation, because through them and its endorsement, the public administration is now involved in the process. “When the public administration is involved in the process, as in this case through the endorsement of the ICOs, it decides whether or not to adhere to these agreements, and the public administration is not exactly known for its support of them. This also applies to companies seeking to restructure (without going into a bankruptcy process) that have applied for an ICO loan. In these cases, if the Administration does not change its usual dynamics, restructuring will not be an option for companies, and they will end up going through a hard insolvency process and thus liquidation.“, explains Davinia Sánchez.

Undoubtedly, as the article indicates, the economy will endure a major test with the gradual withdrawal of the fiscal and monetary support that prevented the collapse when the pandemic was at its highest, and one of the key elements now will be the examination of the solvency of companies. Banks and law firms are preparing for a wave of restructurings and refinancings in large companies.

Don’t miss out the article!

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