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money markets' bubbles « Previous | |Next »
February 16, 2008

Remember David Coe and the Allco Finance Group?

They are the private equity crowd that almost took over Qantas a year ago. It was Coe and his financial engineers who spearheaded that $11 billion takeover bid. Remember the plan? It was to take Qantas private, load it up with debt, and everybody would win. The magic pudding. The financial wizard's plan, based around borrowing heavily to invest in assets that increased in value that allowed them to borrow more to invest in more assets, foundered on share holder resistance.

Now Coe's in trouble from the credit crunch. He is desperately trying to offload assets from his multi-billion financial empire ahead of several debt headlines to keep the banks happy and allow the shares of Allco to resume trading. They were seen to have borrowed to much money and were carrying a lot of debt with the financial crisis in the US last year arising from the sub-prime and liquidity crisis.

I do not comprehend the complicated corporate financial structures and network constructed by the financial wizards, or the way they developed these complicated financial structures to take advantage of loopholes in American and European tax laws. But I know that Allco is rapidly running out of options. to address its short term cash flow issues that leave it short of cash for funding commitments, including the acquisition of a portfolio of 29 North American power generators from US energy giant ConEdison. Allco is looking for a buyer to take on the cash and debt commitments.

I do know that the global financial system's financial bubble, which was based on more and more loans with a high risk of default, has burst. Credit continues to contract, debt deflation is happening in the US, there are lots of loses from the bursting of the US housing bubble and the recession in the US has begun.

| Posted by Gary Sauer-Thompson at 10:38 PM | | Comments (4)


bubbles inflating and popping are just the normal and natural part of the capitalist process. Bubbles come and go, but each of these fleeting economic moments, lays the foundation for the next space of economic opportunity that can be exploited by dyamic and innovative entrepreneurs.

You need to take the long view and governments need to stand out of the way. So argues Jason Potts in the CIS latest issue of their Policy magazine.

a society based on seven year old heroin dealers buying tanks with the profits from prostitution of young kids dosen't appeal to many as an example of a good society

its just not Allco. Centro Properties Group has just admitted that its debt situation is more precarious than previously revealed. It's current liabilities about $1.5 billion higher than stated in its accounts.The additional current debt comes on top of $1.1 billion disclosed when Centro corrected its preliminary 2007 accounts in September. It means the company will have to renegotiate or repay close to three quarters of its $3.6 billion total debt within the next 12 months.

They have The company ultimately secured an extension for about $US1.3 billion ($1.4 billion) in debt for its US business until September 30, plus $US80 million in additional funding. The Australian lenders have granted a lifeline until April 30 for $2.3 billion in debt.

As for Allco, David Coe will this morning reveal the full extent of the crisis — both financial and reputational — that has swirled around the group since its shares went into freefall from mid-December. Most of the emphasis — and the questions — will focus on Allco's immediate future, its plans to reduce its debt mountain and what it will have to sell to gain a lifeline. Macquarie Group, Texas Pacific and Babcock & Brown are believed to have explored informal bids for parts or all of Allco, given that they have similar operations which could be expanded through the Allco sell-off.

And the Australian banks? They too have a big exposure to derivative markets and are exposed to corporate failures.

re Centro. The short term conditional support by the banks gives Centro more time. More time for what? A stay of execution?

As with Allco, we are talking about paying back/refinancing short term debt in an uncertain economic and volatile financial market.

The solution is a cash injection to ease the cconcerns of the banks and ensure the independence of Centro (and Allco) as an ongoing corporate entity.

How is that injection going to happen? Who is going to buy what?