OGX Petroleo & Gas participacoes SA, the oil company controlled by former billionaire Eike Batista, named a former telecommunications executive to head its finances amid debt restructuring talks.
The Rio de Janeiro-based explorer appointed Paulo Narcelio Simoes Amaral as Chief Financial Officer, replacing Roberto Monteiro, who was fired last week while he led negotiations in New York with holders of OGX’s $3.6 billion of dollar debt. Amaral was previously the CFO at telephone company Brasil Telecom SA from 2007 to 2009.
The management change comes as OGX is seeking cash to continue operations long enough to start producing oil from Tubarao Martelo, its next production project. OGX probably will ask bondholders for more cash as part of a debt restructuring plan, Chief Executive Officer Luiz Carneiro said Sept. 12. The company has $44.5 million in interest payments on its 2022 bond due Oct. 1 and $108.9 million on its 2018 notes due Dec. 1.
While filing for bankruptcy protection is a possibility, OGX expects to avoid the proceedings in a restructuring that may see Batista cede control of his flagship company, Carneiro said. Bondholders last month hired Rothschild to advise on restructuring talks, while OGX hired Blackstone Group LP.