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Six Flags Exits Bankruptcy After Cutting Debt

Six Flags Inc., the owner of 19 theme parks in the U.S., Canada and Mexico, emerged from bankruptcy court protection today after reducing debt by more than half.

Six Flags cut its obligations to $1 billion from the $2.7 billion it owed to creditors and holders of redeemable preferred stock as of Dec. 31, according to a statement today. Under the reorganization, a group of investors is buying $725 million worth of new stock being issued by New York-based Six Flags.

The company resolved the final objections to its reorganization plan last week, clearing the way to leave court protection it entered last June. The restructuring will help Six Flags generate sustainable long-term growth, Chief Executive Officer Mark Shapiro said in the statement.

The restructuring was also financed by about $1 billion of senior secured credit facilities and a $120 million revolving credit facility, Six Flags said. An affiliate of Time Warner Inc. provided a $150 million loan. Six Flags will apply to list the new common stock on the New York Stock Exchange.

No single shareholder will control the company, Paul Harner, an attorney for Six Flags, and Tom Lauria, a lawyer for noteholders, said April 28. The biggest shareholders will be Stark Investments of the Milwaukee suburb of St. Francis, Wisconsin, Bay Harbour Management, H Partners and Pentwater Capital Management LP, Lauria said at the time.

The lead case is In re Premier International Holdings Inc., 09-12019, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, District of Delaware (Wilmington).

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