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Bicent Power Files for Bankruptcy Protection in Delaware

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April 23 (Bloomberg) -- Bicent Holdings LLC and 12 affiliates sought bankruptcy protection from creditors saying the electricity producer will file a pre-arranged reorganization plan within five business days.

Bicent Power LLC listed assets of less than $500,000 and debt of as much as $1 billion in Chapter 11 documents filed today in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Wilmington, Delaware.

“The company engaged in extensive negotiations with the supporting lenders, which resulted in the debtors successfully negotiating a pre-arranged plan of reorganization,” Christopher Ryan, chief financial officer of Bicent Holdings, said in court papers.

Bicent, based in Lafayette, Colorado, owns and operates two generating facilities: Hardin, a 120-megawatt coal-fired plant about 40 miles (64 kilometers) southeast of Billings, Montana, and San Joaquin, a 48-megawatt natural gas-fired facility about 70 miles east of San Francisco in Lathrop, California, according to court papers.

Bicent Holdings is owned by non-debtor Bicent Prime Holdings, which is 87.1 percent-owned by Natural Gas Partners VIII LP, Natural Gas Partners IX LP and NGP IX Offshore Holdings LP and 12.9 percent-owned by Beowulf (Bicent) LLC, court papers show.

Bicent’s largest unsecured creditors include Barclays Capital, as agent under a mezzanine credit agreement, with a claim of $65.5 million; Lea Power Partners LLC, with a claim of $22 million; and the Montana Department of Revenue, with a claim of $820,475, according to court papers.

Colorado Energy Management, CEM Energy Services, Colorado Cogen Operators, San Joaquin Cogen, Rocky Mountain Power, Hartwell, Hartwell Power Co., Hartwell Independent Power Partners, Hart County IPP, Bicent R.F. and Bicent Funding also sought protection.

The main case is In re Bicent Holdings LLC, 12-11304, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, District of Delaware (Wilmington).

To contact the reporter on this story: Dawn McCarty in Wilmington at dmccarty@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: John Pickering at jpickering@bloomberg.net