SYDNEY, July 19 Australia's takeover regulator
declined a request from Oaktree Capital Management and
Centerbridge Partners to delay a $359 million refinancing deal
surfwear for company Billabong International Ltd on
The two U.S. hedge funds, whose own refinancing proposals
were rebuffed by Billabong, had asked the Takeovers Panel to
intervene in the deal with Altamont Capital Partners because
some elements, including a hefty break fee, were
"anti-competitive and coercive".
The panel declined to stop the sale but would still
investigate the deal, a spokesman said.
Billabong had earlier said it disagreed with the basis for
the Oaktree and Centrebridge request.
The two funds had asked the panel to delay the drawdown of a
$294 million bridge facility and the sale of Billabong's DaKine
brand to Altamont, both expected to occur early next week,
pending the results of an investigation.
Billabong announced a refinancing deal with Altamont on
Tuesday, unveiling plans to issue Altamont share options for 15
percent of the company along with the sale of the DaKine
The company said Thursday it had received a proposal from
the two hedge funds, which recently bought some of Billabong's
debt from senior lenders, after it had entered into the binding
agreement with Altamont.
Plagued with high debt from an ill-timed expansion and
struggling as its brands fell out of favor, Billabong has issued
a series of profit warnings since rejecting a A$850 million bid
from private equity firm TPG Capital Management in
Billabong's shares ended up 9.6 percent at A$0.40 on Friday,
from a high of A$13.56 six years ago.