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Hornblower Group completes its restructuring

Written by Nick Blenkey
Hornblower Group CEO

Hornblower Group CEO Kevin Rabbitt: “With the support of “Today marks a new beginning for Hornblower.”

Hornblower Group, which filed for Chapter 11 protection in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Texas in February, reported on July 3 that it has successfully completed its financial restructuring process and emerged with new majority ownership, a focused portfolio and financial flexibility to support its growth over the long-term. That news came less than a month after court approval of the company’s company’s plan of reorganization

Hornblower Group delivers a range of water and land-based services, including ferry transportation and dinner and sightseeing cruises.

The company serves over 20 million people each year in more than 100 countries and 50 U.S. cities through the following offerings:

  • City Cruises, offering public dining and sightseeing cruises at more than 20 destinations in the U.S., Canada and the UK.
  • Transportation services to three major globally known attractions: Statue of Liberty, Alcatraz and Niagara Falls.
  • Walks & Devour, providing sightseeing and food tours in Europe, Canada and the U.S.
  • Ferry & Transportation, transporting commuters, vehicles and other cargo across inland and coastal waterways in the Northeast, including operations in NYC and Puerto Rico.
  • Anchor Operating System, a subsidiary of Hornblower Group and an independent entity, providing operating and ticketing systems for the maritime and tourism industries.

“Today marks a new beginning for Hornblower,” said Hornblower Group CEO Kevin Rabbitt. “We have an expert team with a long history of delivering safe, world-class experiences. We have the continued support of our government agency and business partners, and we have new owners who support our strategic priorities. I am excited about the future and for what we will deliver to our guests and commuters around the world.”

With the completion of the financial restructuring, funds managed by alternative investment firm Strategic Value Partners, LLC have acquired majority ownership of Hornblower with Crestview Partners retaining a significant minority position.

As a result of the restructuring process, Hornblower says that it has reduced its total debt by approximately $720 million (or more than 70%) and substantially increased its liquidity.

David Geenberg, co-head of the North American investment team at SVP, said, “We are thrilled to see Hornblower enter this new era of growth. The Company is a leader in the maritime space, with a dedicated crew, robust infrastructure and an unwavering commitment to safety and service excellence. Together, we will build on this strong foundation, with a plan to grow the portfolio of world-class consumer experiences and setting the standard for public-private partnerships in ferries and transportation.”

Brian Cassidy, president of Crestview, added, “Following the completion of this process, we believe that the company has a strong balance sheet and is positioned to continue meeting the travel and transportation needs of their guests and commuters. We look forward to continuing our partnership with Hornblower.”

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