Corporations cannot afford to treat fraud as an uncontrollable act perpetuated on them. The risks and problems associated with fraud are on the rise, while the financial consequences of ineffective fraud controls are proving to be increasingly damaging. There is no doubt that fraud awareness is increasing at companies. According to PwC’s 2018 Global Economic Crime and Fraud Survey:

  • 49 percent of organizations globally said they’ve been victims of fraud and economic crime—up from 36 percent in 2016

  • 64 percent of respondents who had been victimized said
  • ...

Thomas Jefferson recognized more than a century ago that “agriculture is our wisest pursuit, because it will in the end contribute most to real wealth, good morals and happiness.” Today, agriculture, food, and related industries contribute more than $1 trillion to U.S. GDP. They account for more than 20 million jobs—more than 10 percent of U.S. employment. This wise pursuit, however, is currently under an economic siege that will not soon abate.

Market watchers have long been predicting that historically low commodity prices of the last several years would lead to a financial crisis...

Having spent the past 18 years at SB360 Capital Partners (formerly SB Capital Group), I can say with certainty that the turnaround industry has evolved. What surprises me most is how we have been forced to change our own industry, even though at times it didn’t seem broken. But if you think about it, it should come as no surprise. The companies we serve are constantly changing, and we need to evolve with them.

In thinking about this edition of the JCR, I wanted to bring together a group of industry veterans who have been through, and are currently going through, the evolution...

I’m honored to have been selected as chair of the Editorial Advisory Board starting in 2019. Together with our new CEO, Scott Stuart, and Editor Eddy McNeil, we’re planning some innovative changes to the JCR that should provide a lot value to our membership and continue to position us as the premier member-focused periodical in the restructuring community.

This year has proven to be a busy time the turnaround industry and even more so within retail restructuring, the theme for this issue of the JCR. In fact, 2018 is on pace to be one of the most active years for large...

As we reflect on the 10th anniversary of the bankruptcy filing of Lehman Brothers Inc., it’s not difficult to notice that the restructuring industry has changed dramatically over the past decade. Bankruptcy filings are down. Chapter 11 cases that are filed are of shorter duration, and sales under Section 363 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code outnumber classic plans of reorganization.

However, after a modest downturn in available capital to fund new deals, liquidity is back. Many players in our market are looking to do deals involving distress or otherwise financially challenged assets,...

The middle market is in the midst of a 10-year M&A bull market characterized by increasingly high transaction multiples, rising leverage levels, and rapid growth in credit assets under management (AUM) from non-bank lenders. Despite the present optimism, it is not difficult to imagine how an unexpected economic setback combined with these characteristics could result in a perfect storm—a potentially severe and far-reaching credit correction across the middle market and possibly beyond, into other asset classes.

Are we headed for choppy waters, and if so, what can companies,...

A troubled company often reflexively perceives a bankruptcy filing as the prototype solution to its financial distress. Bankruptcy is an important and powerful tool to address insolvency—providing for an automatic stay, the sale of assets free and clear, confirmation of a plan over the objection of creditors, and discharge of debts.

A bankruptcy, however, has several limitations, including significant time and expense. Bankruptcy also frequently results in a sale or liquidation, as opposed to reorganization, and may involve protracted litigation. These drawbacks often render...

Last year more than 20 national retail chains filed for bankruptcy protection, continuing a trend that many observers attribute to the rise of e-commerce and the unprecedented growth of Amazon. While the impact of those forces certainly cannot be denied, the history of retail is also one marked by disruptive change, as new forms of retailing evolve and technology places increasing power in the hands of consumers.

I believe changes over the last decade have centered around speed—among them the speed to market in sourcing, the speed with which retailers can communicate with consumers...

Six out of every 10 businesses are experiencing the same or higher levels of losses to online fraud compared with a year ago, according to “The 2018 Global Fraud and Identity Report” from Experian. Fraud was cited as a growing concern by 72 percent of businesses that participated in the study. Bankrupt companies are also three times more likely to be cited for fraud by U.S. regulators, according to a study from Deloitte Financial Advisory Services LLP.  That study indicated companies that experience fraud are much more likely than those that do not to land in Bankruptcy Court.

Many...

Despite the strong stock market performance and the low interest rate environment, financial distress, as measured by the number of Chapter 11 bankruptcy filings, is gradually increasing in both general Chapter 11 and real estate. The exception to this “gradual” increase is in healthcare, which has seen filings spike to record-high numbers filings over the past two years, as documented in the Polsinelli/TrBk Distress Indices.

Some reasons for the increased distress in healthcare are obvious, such as those related to a new regulatory and economic environment created under “Obamacare...