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Jonathan Addo
Jonathan Addo
  • Jonathan Addo

  • Partner
  • British Virgin Islands
Ian Mann
Ian Mann
  • Ian Mann

  • Partner
  • Hong Kong
Nick Hoffman
Nick Hoffman
  • Nick Hoffman

  • Partner
  • Cayman Islands
Vicky Lord
Vicky Lord
  • Vicky Lord

  • Partner
  • Hong Kong
Chai Ridgers
Chai Ridgers
  • Chai Ridgers

  • Partner
  • Hong Kong
William Peake
William Peake
  • William Peake

  • Partner
  • London
Peter Ferrer
Peter Ferrer
  • Peter Ferrer

  • Partner
  • British Virgin Islands
James Noble
James Noble
  • James Noble

  • Partner
  • Singapore
Jeremy Child
Jeremy Child
  • Jeremy Child

  • Partner
  • London
Claire Goldstein
Claire Goldstein
  • Claire Goldstein

  • Partner
  • British Virgin Islands
Jayson Wood
Jayson Wood
  • Jayson Wood

  • Partner
  • Cayman Islands
Phillip Kite
Phillip Kite
  • Phillip Kite

  • Partner
  • London
Stuart Cullen
Stuart Cullen
  • Stuart Cullen

  • Partner
  • British Virgin Islands
Lorinda Peasland
Lorinda Peasland
  • Lorinda Peasland

  • Consultant
  • Hong Kong
Paul Madden
Paul Madden
  • Paul Madden

  • Partner
  • Cayman Islands
Jessica Williams
Jessica Williams
  • Jessica Williams

  • Partner
  • Cayman Islands
Paula Kay
Paula Kay
  • Paula Kay

  • Partner
  • Hong Kong
Andrew Thorp
Andrew Thorp
  • Andrew Thorp

  • Partner
  • British Virgin Islands
Henry Mander
Henry Mander
  • Henry Mander

  • Partner
  • Cayman Islands
Andrew Johnstone
Andrew Johnstone
  • Andrew Johnstone

  • Partner
  • Hong Kong
Nicola Roberts
Nicola Roberts
  • Nicola Roberts

  • Partner
  • Hong Kong
Julie Engwirda
Julie Engwirda
  • Julie Engwirda

  • Partner
  • Hong Kong
Paul Smith
Paul Smith
  • Paul Smith

  • Partner
  • Cayman Islands

China Agrotech Blog #2: It's a Matter of Time

The recent case of In re China Agrotech Holdings Limited showcases the agility of the Courts in the Cayman Islands and Hong Kong in dealing with restructuring matters. 

The terms of the restructuring in this case, with the ultimate aim of re-listing the Company, comprised a capital reduction, parallel schemes of arrangement, share subscription and public offering, all of which had to be completed in an extraordinarily tight timescale. A shareholder challenge placed this in jeopardy.  Failing to achieve any of these components meant the failure of a restructuring five years in the making. The Company and its liquidators needed to be nimble.

Urgent hearings and decisions in both jurisdictions, including considerations of conflict of laws, ensued because:

  • The Company’s public offering would lapse (and the restructuring would fail) if the shareholder challenge was not successfully disposed of, including the expiration of the time for any appeal, by 25 July 2019. An order on the shareholder challenge was thus needed by 9 July. 
  • The capital reduction confirmation was required by 16 July to enable sufficient time for the capital reduction to become effective in time for the allotment of new shares.
  • Court sanction for the schemes was needed by 23 July to enable sufficient time to effect the re-listing on 26 July 2019.

In the Cayman Islands Justice Segal, noted the unusual circumstances of the case affecting not just the parties but also the Company’s other shareholders, creditors and stakeholders on a contested summons issued on 12 June, heard the shareholder dispute on 5 July, made an order on 9 July and delivered a detailed judgment on 16 July. He then presided over an urgent hearing to deal with the need for the capital reduction confirmation by 16 July.  In Hong Kong, with Mr. Justice Harris having to recuse himself in an unusual twist to the case, swift collaboration saw Deputy Judge Mr. William Wong SC stepping in to preside over a contested sanction hearing and deliver an immediate judgment, enabling the Hong Kong timetable to be met.  The case also benefited from Mr. Justice Harris’s cross jurisdictional communication with Justice Segal to assist in the disposal of matters.   

The approach of the Courts in the Cayman Islands and in Hong Kong demonstrates they are market leaders and jurisdictions of choice in the global restructuring arena.   

Harneys acted for the Company and its liquidators.The team was led by partners Ian Mann and Chai Ridgers in Hong Kong and the team comprised Jayson Wood, Paul Madden and Lachlan Greig in the Cayman Islands and Lorinda Peasland and Charles Wong in Hong Kong.

Watch out for Blog 3 – “A Shareholders Challenge” coming soon. 

China Agrotech Blog #2: It's a Matter of Time

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