Woodside Group LLC, a Utah-based homebuilder with projects throughout the Southwest, won't contest a move by lenders led by JPMorgan Chase Bank NA and a group of noteholders to force the company into bankruptcy.
Closely held Woodside will put the company and more than 200 affiliates into court protection by Sept. 16, according to an agreement with noteholders and JPMorgan filed Wednesday with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Riverside, Calif.
Noteholders John Hancock Life Insurance Co., AXA Equitable Life Insurance Co., Metropolitan Life Insurance Co., New York Life Insurance Co. and Security Life of Denver Insurance Co. filed to force Woodside into bankruptcy on Aug. 20, saying Woodside had defaulted on more than $400 million in debt. New York-based JPMorgan joined the request that day, saying it was agent for a group of banks owed another $330 million on a defaulted loan.
Woodside continues to build and sell homes and pay employees and subcontractors, company spokeswoman Jennifer Mercer said Thursday in an interview. Woodside doesn't expect it will need a loan to fund operations during Chapter 11, she said.
"The company has plenty of cash on hand," Mercer said.
Woodside will join affiliates Woodside AMR 107 Inc. and Woodside Portofino Inc., which filed for bankruptcy in March. It builds homes in Utah, Arizona, California, Nevada, Minnesota, Texas, Florida and the suburbs of Washington, D.C. Nevada and California ranked first and second in foreclosure rates for June.