Manistique Papers still has a lot of work to do to guarantee its future, but the paper mill and a nearby bank have just made a big first step.
The company has reached an agreement with mBank that should lead to a re–opening in the near future.
mBank has just bought MPI’s debt of $11 million from another bank.
Terms are not being disclosed.
The original creditor was trying to force MPI into federal Chapter 7 bankruptcy, which involves liquidation.
Without a deal, liqudation of MPI’s assets could have begun as soon as today.
MPI can now restructure under Chapter 11 protection instead and continue operation.
mBank president and CEO Kelly George says he and other executives with the bank, which is based in Manistique, didn’t want to allow the city’s second-largest private-sector employer to fold.
He says banks get a lot of negative media attention nationally, but he says there are a lot of good community banks in the U.P. that care about their areas because if their own areas are successful, the banks are successful.
However, Manistique Papers could be back in bankruptcy again if it doesn’t return to an acceptable earnings level over the next several months.