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The Economist | Brazil’s oil industry: Bustista

The Economist

Brazil’s oil industry
Bustista
Eike Batista’s oil firm files for bankruptcy protection

SÃO PAULO

ON OCTOBER 30th OGX, the oil-and-gas firm at the heart of the business empire of Eike Batista, a flamboyant entrepreneur who was until recently Brazil’s richest man, filed for bankruptcy protection. One month earlier it had missed a $45m payment to bondholders, and attempts to negotiate a debt restructuring during a 30-day grace period failed. With $3.6 billion in bonds and another $500m owed to suppliers, it is Latin America’s largest corporate failure. OGX now has two months, extendable for a further three, to agree a recovery plan with investors. Without fresh funding it will run out of cash by the end of the year and risk losing its most valuable remaining assets, stakes in two offshore oilfields close to production. That would leave investors with little or nothing.

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