Q-Cells: negotiations with bond creditors put on hold

Due to a formal complaint, negotiations between Q-Cells and its bond creditors have currently come to a standstill. Nevertheless the photovoltaic company anticipates that a solution will be reached within the prescribed period.

Despite ongoing proceedings, the solar cell specialist is demonstrating optimism that it will be able to reach a timely solution with its creditors on a possibly deferred payment of the convertible bond, which matures in February. "We are making progress in obtaining the payment deferral within the prescribed period," said Q-Cells spokeswoman Ina von Spiess in response to an inquiry from pv magazine.

The matter involves approximately €200 million that Q-Cells International Finance BV must pay its investors at the end of February, under terms still current. In order to obtain a possible respite, Q-Cells called for a meeting of the company’s creditors in October, who in turn selected attorney Carlos Mack as their representative. Mack was to conduct negotiations with Q-Cells in the interest of the creditors. However, this choice was contested before Frankfurt Regional Court and the matter has yet to be concluded.

Creditors argued that their rights were undermined by the choice. "I am not yet effectively in office," commented Mack. As a result of this incapacity to act, negotiations between Q-Cells and creditors have essentially been put on the back burner. When contacted, the law offices of the two parties declined to comment on the proceedings.

Q-Cells has attempted to expedite a decision on the action by means of an accelerated approval procedure. pv magazine has learned that the parties involved expect that a solution can still be reached in January. This could also mean out of court compensation for individual creditors.

In 2007 Q-Cells placed a convertible bond of more than €492 million with a maturity period up to February 28, 2012. It has repayed just under €290 million. Additional bonds will become due in 2014 and 2015.