AbitibiBowater Emerges from Bankruptcy
• Completed a strategic review and sold non-core assets and land holdings for total aggregate proceeds of over $940 million.
• Reduced its debt burden by 88 percent from $6.8 billion to $850 million, excluding approximately $239 million in non-recourse joint-venture debt for ACH Limited Partnership. This Company is currently in the process of evaluating the potential sale of ACH.
• Eliminated $880 million of annual fixed costs, from $1,353 million to $473 million.
• Realized over $375 million in annualized synergies from manufacturing efficiencies and SG&A reductions as well as procurement and logistics initiatives.
• Entered into agreements with provincial authorities in Ontario and Quebec, reducing annual pension fund contributions by approximately $200 million. These reductions have been made while registered pension plans continue to pay 100 percent of obligations to retirees and beneficiaries. The Company will gradually move towards normalized solvency funding over a 10-year period.
• Completed other initiatives that have materially improved AbitibiBowater’s financial position, including: the repudiation or renegotiation of unfavorable contracts, creating savings of over $78 million and the settlement of a North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) claim of C$130 million for the expropriation of Company assets in Newfoundland and Labrador.
In noting the importance of this occasion, Alain Grandmont, Executive Vice President, Human Resources and Supply Chain, stated: "It brings me great pride in sharing this defining moment in AbitibiBowater's history with our employees, union leadership, customers, business partners and supporters, without whom this day would not have been possible. In the long process of our turnaround, all of us have made sacrifices to place this organization in the much stronger position it now enjoys. AbitibiBowater values and appreciates the commitment all have shown in helping us reach this point."
“The restructuring process has tested the strength of our relations with our employees, unions, business partners and the communities where we live and do business. We will work hard to renew positive relationships and build goodwill through a commitment to be profitable as well as environmentally and socially responsible,” said Pierre Rougeau, Executive Vice President, Operations and Sales.