Case | HBS Case Collection | February 2011

Countrywide plc

by Stuart C. Gilson and Sarah L. Abbott

Abstract

One of the world's leading investors in distressed companies, Oaktree Capital Management, is contemplating a "loan to own" investment in the debt of Countrywide plc, a financially troubled residential real estate agent based in the U.K. Only sixteen months earlier, Countrywide was acquired by private equity investor Apollo Management L.P. in a leveraged buyout. Although Countrywide is the largest real estate agent in the U.K., and has a strong portfolio of assets, its economic fortunes have declined suddenly with the widespread collapse of global financial and real estate markets, putting it in danger of defaulting on its debt and having to restructure under a U.K. Scheme of Arrangement.

Keywords: Mergers and Acquisitions; Restructuring; Financial Crisis; Capital Structure; Insolvency and Bankruptcy; Financial Management; Investment; Real Estate Industry; United Kingdom;

Citation:

Gilson, Stuart C., and Sarah L. Abbott. "Countrywide plc." Harvard Business School Case 211-026, February 2011.