Advisers to the embattled property developer China Evergrande Group and the advisers representing its bondholders have taken their first steps toward possible debt talks.
According to Bloomberg News, Evergrande’s advisers Houlihan Lokey and Admiralty Harbour Capital, and its offshore bondholder advisers Moelis & Co and Kirkland & Ellis, have reached non-disclosure agreements which enable the two sides to prepare for talks.
The agreements were signed after the advisers’ previous outreach attempts were rebuffed. The advisers are seeking to exchange information with Evergrande about the status of its projects, liquidity, asset valuation, and other items.
Evergrande is dealing with a cash crunch and just narrowly averted a big default with a last-minute bond coupon payment last week.
The focus now turns to whether Evergrande can pay the $45 million bond coupon originally due on Sept. 29 by Friday, Oct. 29, when a 30-day grace period expires.
Even if the property giant can stave off that default, it still has $19.2 billion in outstanding dollar bonds and more than $300 billion in liabilities, meaning several major payment deadlines ahead.
This week, Evergrande’s billionaire founder Hui Ka Yan has been asked to tap his personal wealth to help solve his company’s deepening debt crisis.