Companies

Wind-up plea: Wockhardt deposits Rs 115 cr in court

| Updated on: May 04, 2011

Drug-maker Wockhardt has deposited about Rs 115 crore to the department concerned at the Bombay High Court.

As part of the wind-up petition brought against the company, Wockhardt had been directed by the High Court to pay 25 per cent of the outstanding amount — an estimated Rs 115 crore — in the Court by May 3.

The company had paid this amount in late April, and the confirmation has been sent to BNY Corporate Trustee, a legal source familiar with the development told Business Line .

The case, however, did not come up as scheduled today.

Wockhardt is facing a wind-up petition filed by bondholders and investors unhappy with the company for defaulting on the repayment of its $110-million foreign currency convertible bonds (FCCB).

The petition was filed by bond trustee BNY Corporate Trustee Services Ltd (the Bank of New York Mellon) on behalf of bondholders, including Sun Pharma Global and QVT.

Sun reportedly holds about 20 per cent of Wockhardt's foreign currency convertible bonds.

However, Wockhardt got a breather in late March when the Bombay High Court issued an ad-interim stay on the order of admission of the winding-up petition.

The trustee and foreign bondholders are being represented by DSK Legal and Juris Corp, respectively, while Wockhardt is being handled by Majmudar and Co.

Saddled with a debt of over Rs 3,700 crore in 2008, Wockhardt had gone in for corporate debt restructuring. It defaulted on its foreign currency convertible bonds in late 2009.

And options placed by Wockhardt to its creditors and investors, as part of the corporate debt restructuring, did not find total acceptance.

Some of them had approached the Bombay High Court, saying that the corporate debt restructuring was one-sided and had not taken on board investors and bondholders, among others – something that Wockhardt refutes.

A wind-up petition filed in Bombay High Court by Singapore-based bank, DBS, had ended with the two companies reaching a settlement in late 2009.

In a separate development at the Delhi High Court, the company said that the Court had approved the demerger of its nutrition business — Vinton Healthcare Ltd, a wholly owned subsidiary of the company — from January 2011.

Wockhardt shares closed after losing 1.35 per cent, at Rs 335.95, on the BSE on Wednesday.

jyothi@thehindu.co.in

Published on May 04, 2011

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