Canwest Global to emerge from creditor protection Wednesday

Also due to unveil a new corporate name and branding


TORONTO -- A leaner Canwest Global Communications Corp. is to emerge from creditor protection Wednesday.

The Canadian broadcaster is to signal its exit from court-directed bankruptcy under the Companies' Creditors Arrangement Act by unveiling a new corporate name and branding later today.

Canwest Global and several corporate entities filed for creditor protection in October 2009 in a bid to get out from under around $4 billion in debt accumulated through a series of acquisitions in better times.

The broadcaster was subsequently taken over by western cable giant Shaw Communications as part of a $2 billion takeover deal that received regulatory approval last week.

Calgary-based, Canwest Global has installed former Corus Entertainment TV exec Paul Robertson to run the new broadcaster.

As part of the takeover, Shaw has purchased Goldman Sachs and Co.'s stake in 13 lucrative cable channels for around $700 million.

Shaw last February first proposed to secure a controlling stake in Canwest Global to help recapitalize the media group, but opted for an outright acquisition after it faced a knock-down legal battle with Goldman Sachs.

Shaw will need to pay another $440 million to U.S. bondholders that, along with Goldman Sachs, have controlled Canwest Global through its voluntary bankruptcy proceedings and will now exit the Canadian market as the cable operators takes control of the Canadian TV assets.

Executives at Canwest Global were not available for comment at press time.

comments powered by Disqus