Blue Bird Corp.

Background

Blue Bird was one of the three major manufacturers of school buses. The other two were subsidiaries of major corporations; Blue Bird was independent.

At the time Zolfo Cooper became involved, Blue Bird’s factories were shut and it was out of cash.

Project

In January 2006, Zolfo Cooper senior professionals were appointed Chairman, Vice Chairman and Chief Restructuring Officer. The scope of the project included:

  • Negotiating immediate capital restructuring and cash infusion.

  • Restarting production and re-establishing working relationships with vendors.

  • Assisting in the development of a business plan and review of that business plan with creditors and other key constituents.

  • Monitoring the 13-week cash flow.

  • Coordinating negotiations with creditors and other major constituents regarding the pre-packaged bankruptcy and resulting capital structure.

  • Facilitating due diligence efforts of the prospective buyers.

  • Assessing the costs and benefits of a bankruptcy filing.

  • Reviewing the plant operation.

Outcome

A capital restructuring was effectuated via a precedent-setting "one day", prepackaged bankruptcy. Equity was transferred to lenders and lenders provided $50 million in liquidity. Zolfo Cooper conducted a sale process which resulted in the acquisition of Blue Bird by a private equity firm.