For Sale: One Mining company, slightly used

Trent Ernst, Editor
Walter Energy announced yesterday that it has put its Canadian subsidiary on the auction block.

According to a release from the company, it has obtained creditor protection under the Companies’ Creditors Arrangement Act (CCAA) pursuant to an Initial Order granted on December 7, 2015 by the Supreme Court of British Columbia located in Vancouver.

The CCAA filing is intended to “facilitate ongoing operations while Walter Canada pursues a marketing process for its Canadian assets and for its holdings in the United Kingdom, including assets owned by United Kingdom subsidiaries of Walter Canada.”

Walter Canada, and its holdings in the United Kingdom, as well as the company’s assets were not part of the chapter 11 filing the parent company made down in the states, nor are they included in the asset purchase agreement that the Company entered into on November 5, 2015.

According to the company, it is expected that Walter Canada’s operations “will continue uninterrupted in the ordinary course of business.”

Walter idled its Canadian mines a year and a half ago. While the company has said it plans to re-open the Wolverine mine sometime before April, it is as-yet unclear how this planned sale will affect those plans. However, the company says that “obligations incurred after the filing date, including obligations to employees and key suppliers of goods and services, will be paid on an ongoing basis.”

On July 15, 2015, Walter Energy and its U.S. subsidiaries filed for relief under chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code in the Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Alabama.

On November 5, 2015, Walter Energy entered into an asset purchase agreement with a newly formed entity capitalized and owned by members of the Company’s senior lender group, pursuant to which the new company will acquire substantially all of Walter Energy’s Alabama assets.

In addition to Wolverine, Walter Canada operates two other mines: the Brule Mine and the Willow Creek Mine.
Walter Energy’s UK operation consists of the Aberpergwm Mine, an underground development mine located near the town of Neath in South Wales. The mine produces anthracite coal.

More information as it comes available.