A U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Delaware has confirmed Flying J’s plan to reorganize and emerge from bankruptcy, repaying its creditors in cash plus interest, Truckinginfo.com reported.
Flying J filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection back in December 2008, and since that time has been working to restructure. It officially merged retail operations with Pilot Travel Centers, last week.
In addition, Flying J refinanced some of its debt and sold certain non-core assets, including Longhorn Pipeline, Flying J Oil and Gas, Haycock Petroleum, and Big West of California, allowing the company to repay in full the $1.4 billion owed to its creditors, Truckinginfo.com reported.
“We have had to make some very difficult decisions over the past 18 months to maximize value and pay back our creditors,” said Crystal Maggelet, Flying J CEO. “Like many companies in today’s economy, this meant job loss for some employees, many of whom have been with us a very long time. Impact on employees has been the most difficult part of the restructuring process. We are now poised for a bright future.” She added, “For a company with such a complex corporate structure, more than 15,000 employees and debts of this magnitude, emergence from bankruptcy is extremely difficult.”
The merger with Pilot Travel Centers has created Pilot Flying J, which will continue to operate the Flying J locations under the Flying J brand. To avoid confusion, Flying J Inc. has changed its corporate name to FJ Management Inc. FJ Management will continue to own and operate the Big West Oil refinery in North Salt Lake, Utah, and Transportation Alliance Bank. It also plans to maintain an ownership stake in Transportation Clearing House and in the recently formed Pilot Flying J nationwide network of travel centers.