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Sept. 20, 2019, 1:41 p.m. EDT

McDermott hires law firm Kirkland & Ellis as debt talks heat up

Distressed engineering firm and lender group have each engaged counsel to advise on restructuring some $3.5 billion of debt

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By Alexander Gladstone

McDermott International Inc.

McDermott International Inc.’s debt talks are heating up with the struggling engineering firm hiring Kirkland & Ellis LLP to advise on efforts to restructure its balance sheet, according to people familiar with the matter.

On the other side of the table, a group of lenders has hired Jones Day as counsel, the people said. The group is holding pitches to also appoint a financial adviser, the people added. Meanwhile a group of bondholders has hired financial adviser Houlihan Lokey Inc.

McDermott is also working with AlixPartners LLP, as The Wall Street Journal previously reported . The company said Friday it has hired Evercore Inc. to help it sell its Lummus Technology unit. McDermott has received unsolicited approaches for Lummus, which is valued at $2.5 billion, the company said. Read more about McDermott’s stock selloff earlier this week.

“The process of exploring strategic alternatives is part of our ongoing efforts intended to improve McDermott’s capital structure, and we plan to use the proceeds from any transaction involving Lummus Technology to strengthen our balance sheet,” said David Dickson, McDermott’s Chief Executive Officer, in a statement Friday.

An expanded version of this report appears at WSJ.com .

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