NextEra Sweetens Energy Future Loan in Oncor Takeover Bid

NextEra Energy Inc. and a group of Energy Future Holdings Corp. creditors revised a restructuring proposal that would give the Florida utility control of Energy Future’s profitable Oncor unit.

The new offer would increase the valuation of Oncor by $500 million, NextEra and investors holding second-lien notes issued by Oncor’s parent company said yesterday in a filing in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Wilmington, Delaware.

“Our commitment to Texas runs deep, having invested more than $7 billion in transmission, power generation and other operations in the Lone Star state,” Rob Gould, a spokesman for NextEra, said in a telephone interview.

Allan Koenig, a spokesman for Dallas-based Energy Future, declined to comment.

Bonds of the Oncor parent rose. Energy Future Intermediate Holding’s $1.75 billion of 11.75 percent second-lien securities due March 2022 increased by 0.9 cents on the dollar to 124.5 cents, yielding 7.3 percent, according to Trace, the bond-price reporting system of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority.

The proposed reorganization would provide for higher recoveries to Energy Future’s creditors while also allowing a deregulated subsidiary to spin off without subjecting the power producer to an outsized tax liability. Energy Future filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection April 29 to restructure $49.7 billion of debt after electricity prices fell along with natural gas prices, cutting profits. The company was taken private in a record $48 billion leveraged buyout in 2007.

Progress Report

Energy Future is slated to report to U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Christopher Sontchi tomorrow on progress in talks with creditors and other parties on “potentially beneficial” developments, according to a July 8 court filing.

NextEra’s plan is the latest in a series of bids for a better deal by creditors who have accused the company of trying to jam through a program devised before the April bankruptcy filing in a pact with management-friendly investors.

The case is Energy Future Holdings Corp., 14-bk-10979, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, District of Delaware (Wilmington).

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