Puerto Rico Sales-Tax Creditors Said to Hire Miller Buckfire

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A group of investors that owns Puerto Rico sales-tax bonds hired financial adviser Miller Buckfire & Co. to represent their interests as creditors gird for a government plan to restructure the island’s debt, according to three people with knowledge of the matter.

The bondholder group, which owns about $5 billion face value of the securities, includes EJF Capital, Goldentree Asset Management and Whitebox Advisors, said the people, who asked not to be named because the hiring hasn’t been made public. New York-based Miller Buckfire, the turnaround adviser owned by Stifel Financial Corp., will join law firm Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan in representing the holders of what are known as Cofina bonds after the Spanish acronym for the Puerto Rico Sales Tax Financing Corp., the people said.

The group is selecting advisers as holders of different types of Puerto Rico debt seek to organize to protect their investments ahead of an anticipated plan from government officials about how to restructure the island’s $72 billion of borrowings.

Scott Sunshine, a spokesman for Goldentree at Water & Wall Group, and Amara Kaiyalethe, a spokeswoman for Whitebox, declined to comment. Emily Ramsey, a spokeswoman for Miller Buckfire, and Karli Waterman of EJF Capital didn’t immediately provide comment.