UPDATE 1-Batista's Brazil oil firm in fresh funding talks-sources
SAO PAULO, Jan 24 (Reuters) - Bankrupt oil producer Ôleo e Gás Participações SA has delayed detailing its restructuring plan to creditors by about a week as it tries to secure up to $200 million in new funding, said two sources familiar with the situation on Friday. Ôleo e Gás, controlled by Brazilian tycoon Eike Batista whose business empire collapsed last year, and its creditors were discussing terms of a potential $200 million debtor-in-possession loan, said the sources. The company, which had been expected to present its restructuring plans to creditors on Friday, had enough funds to stay afloat and the delay was unlikely to disrupt operations, according to the sources, who declined to be identified. Calls to Ôleo e Gás in Rio de Janeiro were not immediately answered. Lawyers working on behalf of the company and creditors declined to comment. The managers of Ôleo e Gás want to convince the maximum number of creditors to back the recovery plan, which has to be filed with a Brazilian bankruptcy court, the first source said. Ôleo e Gás, formerly known as OGX Petróleo e Gas Participações SA, owes about $5.1 billion to investors such as bond fund Pimco, suppliers including Schlumberger NV, and sister company and shipbuilder OSX Brasil SA. Its bonds and shares fell on Friday, a sign investors worry a deal with creditors could drag on. The price on Ôleo e Gás's 8.375 percent bond due in 2012 slipped to 5.25 cents on the dollar, touching a new low. The company's 8.5 percent bond due in 2018 fell 0.25 cent to 5.5 cents on the dollar on Friday. Its shares shed 8.6 percent to 0.32 Brazilian reais. However, the stock is up 33 percent this year after tumbling 95 percent in 2013.
SLOW PROGRESS Former billionaire Batista, who also controls OSX, saw his empire of commodities and industrial companies collapse last year under a mountain of debt after disappointing output at its oil wells sent investors running for the exits. Once Ôleo e Gás delivers the restructuring plan to the bankruptcy court, creditors will then have between 30 days and 60 days to endorse or reject the plan. Bankers and creditors have moved slowly with the loan because they are uneasy with the lack of precedent for such a structure in Brazil, the second source said. In the United States, debtor-in-possession loans are the first debt that gets repaid. As a result, such loans tend to be a regular feature of bankruptcy cases and are credited with saving companies and their employees from fire-sale liquidations. In recent weeks, Ôleo e Gás obtained a bridge loan to pay for operations while it seeks the debtor-in-possession loan. The company, which filed for bankruptcy protection on Oct. 30, stands to lose offshore exploration rights in Brazil's Espírito Santo state should it fail to meet capital spending commitments by the end of this week, a source with direct knowledge of the situation told Reuters on Thursday.