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Beleaguered Singapore-based water treatment firm Hyflux has reportedly been placed under judicial management order on Monday (16 November).

The judicial management application was filed by an unsecured working group (UWG) of bank lenders on 13 August. These creditors include Mizuho, Bangkok Bank, BNP Paribas, CTBC Bank, KfW, Korea Development Bank, and Standard Chartered Bank.

The Business Times reported today that the Singapore High Court has granted the application and appointed UWG’s financial adviser Borrelli Walsh as interim judicial managers of Hyflux.

Under judicial management, the appointed judicial managers will take control of the company’s affairs, business and property. As a result, the board of directors will lose their management powers and functions to the judicial manager.

“I’m not persuaded that sufficient grounds have been made for any further extensions and this must come to an end at some point,” ruled Justice Aedit Abdullah, in deciding to place Hyflux under judicial management.

Hyflux’s lawyer Nish Shetty from Clifford Chance Asia made a last-minute request for an adjournment on the decision last month but was denied by the judge.

Meanwhile, the Securities Investors Association Singapore (SIAS) and Hyflux’s creditor DBS voiced concerns that the appointed judicial managers should be a “neutral and independent party” with no close contact to any stakeholder group of the firm.

Justice Aedit responded that applications for “additional or substitution” judicial managers can be applied and will be “heard another day”.

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