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Corporate securitization: Trouble brews in UK pub sector

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Bondholder standoff on the cards at ailing Punch.

Long a poster child for the concept of corporate securitization, the UK’s largest pub group, Punch Taverns, now finds itself at the centre of what could be a spectacular disintegration of the concept. An eyewatering 97% of Punch’s £5.2 billion ($8 billion) pub estate has been securitized – a process driven by former chief executive Giles Thorley, who co-founded Nomura’s Principal Finance Group with Guy Hands in the early 1990s. These deals are, however, now on life support, and the stage is set for a landmark standoff between bond and equity holders over their future....