PG&E emerges from Chapter 11 bankruptcy

PG&E crew work on power lines to repair damage caused by the Camp Fire in Paradise, California, U.S. November 21, 2018. REUTERS/Elijah Nouvelage

(Reuters) - Utility PG&E Corp PCG.N said on Wednesday it had emerged from bankruptcy, marking an end to a long-drawn restructuring process which began after its equipment sparked some of the deadliest wildfires in California.

The completion of bankruptcy proceedings sets up the embattled company to tap a state-backed fund that would help power utilities cushion hits from wildfires.

PG&E said it deposited about $5 billion in the wildfire fund.

The company also said it will fund the wildfire victims trust with $5.4 billion in cash and common stock representing a 22.19% stake in the reorganized firm.

The utility had a tumultuous time since filing for bankruptcy protection in January last year, with California Governor Gavin Newsom raising concerns about the reorganization plan as well as a state regulator asking for governance and oversight changes to its plan.

The company, in June, also pleaded guilty to 84 counts of involuntary manslaughter stemming from a devastating 2018 wildfire in Northern California touched off by the utility company’s power lines.

Reporting by Arundhati Sarkar and Shanti S Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta