American Commercial Lines’ Confirmation of Chapter 11


Milbank has successfully represented American Commercial Lines, Inc. in its chapter 11 proceedings, obtaining confirmation of the company’s prepackaged plan of reorganization.

American Commercial Lines is an Indiana-based river barge company owned by funds managed by Platinum Equity LLC. It was founded in 1915 and operates about 3,500 cargo barges on the Mississippi and Ohio rivers and the Gulf Intercoastal Waterway along the Gulf of Mexico. The company employs about 2,100 people on its barges and in two cargo terminals and nine harbor facilities. American Commercial Lines filed for bankruptcy as a result of a combination of historically severe weather conditions and economic pressures which prevented it from being able to service its $1.48 billion in secured debt.

The plan was largely consensual with more than 97% of the debtor’s term loan lenders and 100% of the company’s equity interests voting to accept the plan. The plan will deleverage the company by approximately $949 million and preserve the business and thousands of jobs. The plan will pay unsecured creditors in full and will give term loan lenders 95% of the new common equity and 100% of “Take Back Preferred Equity” of the reorganized debtors. It will also give the company access to a new asset-based loan facility of up to $650 million and additional liquidity in the form of $150 million in cash through a fully backstopped rights offering. Judge Marvin Isgur of the US Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Texas approved the plan, stating that it was “very straightforward” and met all the bankruptcy requirements with no objections.

American Commercial Lines is expected to emerge from bankruptcy in mid- to late-April of 2020.

The Milbank team is led by Financial Restructuring partners Dennis Dunne (Picture), Samuel Khalil and Andrew Leblanc and included Alternative Investments partner Albert Pisa, Financial Restructuring special counsel Brian Kinney and Financial Restructuring associate Parker Milender.

Involved fees earner: Dennis Dunne – Milbank; Samuel Khalil – Milbank; Brian Kinney – Milbank; Andrew LeBlanc – Milbank; Parker Milender – Milbank; Albert Pisa – Milbank;

Law Firms: Milbank;

Clients: American Commercial Lines;