Noble Group hit with $260m lawsuit by Indonesian coal producer

Noble Group Ltd. signage sits on display outside during an investor day in Singapore. Photographer: Nicky Loh/Bloomberg

Noble Group Ltd.’s week of woe just got worse as the commodity trader, which has defaulted on its debt and seen founder Richard Elman quit the board, said that it’s being sued by an Indonesian coal producer for more than a quarter of a billion dollars.

The Hong Kong-based trader “has become aware” that PT Atlas Resources has filed a lawsuit in Indonesia against the company seeking compensation of more than $260 million, it said in a statement on Friday. “The company is not aware of the grounds for the claim or any further details relating to the same. Nonetheless, the company intends to vigorously defend any claim if served.”

Once Asia’s largest commodity trader, Noble Group has faced a mounting crisis over the past three years as it lost billions of dollars, parried criticism of its accounts and sold assets in a bid to survive. Chairman Paul Brough is now racing to push through a restructuring, which will hand control to creditors. The case from PT Atlas highlights the mounting risks to that complex plan.

On Thursday, Noble Group said that it’s possible, though unlikely, bondholders could force it into liquidation, although it argued that any attempt by creditors to wind it up after the default would likely fail. That followed a blow on Tuesday, when major shareholder Goldilocks Investment Co. sued the company. Elman’s resignation as a non-executive director was announced midweek.

Bloomberg

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Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.