Embattled Chinese solar project developer Panda Green is facing a fresh scramble to pay looming debts after hopes noteholders would postpone settlement were dashed.
The Hong Kong listed company, which has been bailed out by Beijing twice, had hoped to persuade the holders of US$350 million of 8.25% senior notes due to mature this month to hold off for two years.
However, having extended the deadline for creditors to accept rescheduling of the debt from December 27 to yesterday, Panda Green was today forced to admit the holders of only 30.85% of the debts had agreed to delay settlement for two years, in return for 8% interest up to January 2022.
With less than US$108 million of the commitment postponed, Panda Green now has only ten days to find the remaining US$242 million.
An update made by the developer to the Hong Kong exchange this morning stated: “The company is exploring options including, but not limited to, loans and/or bonds – whether on terms similar to those of the [newly-postponed] exchange notes or not – from third parties to finance the repayment of outstanding existing notes.”
Change at the top
The news emerged on the same day Hong Kong-listed Chinese solar project development peer GCL New Energy announced president Sun Xingping has stepped down for health reasons.
Sun will be replaced at the project development unit of polysilicon manufacturer GCL by Mo Jicai, VP of fellow developer Shunfeng International Clean Energy Limited. Mo will receive RMB500,000 (US$72,600) per year.
Parent company GCL was hoping to hive off its project development business to Chinese electric utility China Huaneng last year but the state-owned entity walked away from a full takeover in November, instead stating an intent to cherry-pick GCL New Energy’s most attractive generation assets.