NEW YORK, March 18 (Reuters) - The court-appointed trustee overseeing the bankruptcy of chemical company Tronox Inc TRXAQ.PK has appointed an official shareholders committee, indicating that existing stockholders might be eligible to receive some compensation under its bankruptcy plan.
The United States Trustee, Diana Adams, appointed the committee, made up of the largest equity holders, last Friday, according to court documents.
Shareholders committees are often not appointed in bankruptcy proceedings because equity holders take a back seat to the debtor’s creditors and are often wiped out in a bankruptcy.
The appointment of the committee will give shareholders the ability to retain lawyers and be reimbursed by Tronox.
Tronox’s U.S. operations filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in January to contend with environmental remediation and litigation costs the company inherited from Kerr-McGee Corp, from which it was spun off in 2006.
A few months after spinning off Oklahoma City-based Tronox, Kerr-McGee was acquired by Anadarko Petroleum Corp (APC.N) for $18 billion.
In its bankruptcy filing in January, Tronox listed assets of $1.557 billion and debt of $1.221 billion as of Nov. 30, 2008.
The case is In re Tronox Inc., U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Southern District of New York, No. 09-10156. (Reporting by Phil Wahba, editing by Gerald E. McCormick)