Headquartered in New York, Agera Energy LLC (Agera), provided electricity and natural gas to commercial, industrial, and residential customers. The company, an alternative to the local utility, provided electricity and natural gas more customized to their users’ specific needs. By offering customers fixed-price contracts (as opposed to more flexible variable-price contracts), the company grew significantly. With a focus on tailored energy solutions and superior customer service, Agera enjoyed a national footprint of over one million customers.
Due to Agera’s unique business model, the company faced insurmountable challenges. Many of its customer contracts had low, or even negative, profits. Agera also faced significant state regulatory problems for failure to provide enough electricity generated from renewable sources. The company was one of several providers ordered to issue refunds in Connecticut after state officials investigated overcharging of listed rates for billing cycles over several years.
With over $124 million in assets and over $200 million in liabilities, Agera, along with five affiliate debtors, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in the Southern District of New York on October 4, 2019.
Stretto was engaged by Agera’s corporate-restructuring counsel, McDermott Will Emery, to provide a wide breadth of administrative services in a condensed time frame. Working closely with Glass Ratner, Stretto prepared Agera’s Schedules & SOFA, gathering and compiling the requisite information in preparation for document production and court filing. Our team provided substantive support on amendments and web affidavits. Stretto leveraged best-in-class security precautions to ensure the creditor matrix with over 30,000 sensitive data records containing confidential customer information wasn’t publicly accessible. This was especially important as Agera’s long history of viewing their customers as their most valuable asset was of the company’s utmost concern.
Understanding the particular regulatory challenges and role of the US Trustee, Stretto produced noticing documents and customized letters which allowed for quick turnaround on solicitation and reconciliation procedures. Our Client-Services Team also established an in-house call center with full-time operators to field an above-average number of creditor inquiries. Agera sold its remaining assets to Constellation NewEnergy (Constellation), a subsidiary of Exelon Corp., for $24.75 million. Following the sale, the majority of Agera’s customers were transferred to Constellation.
Stretto provided tangible value by serving as a trusted service partner. After a swift, three-month resolution, Stretto continues to host a Virtual Data Room providing stakeholders a centralized, convenient location to perform extensive contract review on numerous documents.