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Fort Valley, Ga.-based Blue Bird Corp. is asking a federal court to approve a pre-packaged Chapter 11 bankruptcy plan filed in U.S. District Court in Nevada on Thursday (Jan. 26), according to the Macon Telegraph.
In an announcement made today, the company said the filing is part of a restructuring plan that will put Blue Bird back on sound footing. The firm, which manufactures school buses and Wanderlodge Class A motorhomes, said it will continue to operate as normal.
“This news marks a positive step forward in Blue Bird’s financial restructuring that will ensure our long-term financial health,” said President and CEO Jeffry Bust. “…The pre-packaged court filing is the most efficient method of completing restructuring.”
Blue Bird is under a temporary shutdown at its Fort Valley plant, which employs about 1,200 people. Human resources director Mike McCurdy could not say when the plant would resume full production, but he said he expects it will be soon.
McCurdy said the shutdown, and the company’s financial difficulties, are the result of this being a slow time of year. Most schools order buses beginning in May, he said.
Blue Bird’s announcement said its agreement with lenders includes a $52.5 million increase in borrowing availability through a new and expanded loan agreement.
The company said it is expecting quick confirmation of the deal.