Title: Managing Director
Firm: Miller Buckfire & Co.
Matt Rodrigue negotiated and advised the biggest municipal bond restructuring in history -- that of the Puerto Rico Sales Tax Financing Corp. (COFINA) bonds.
In February, the Puerto Rico bankruptcy judge approved the resulting COFINA restructuring, affecting $17.6 billion in debt.
In the restructuring, Matt was financial advisor and chief negotiator for the COFINA Senior Bondholder Coalition.
COFINA Senior bondholders got recoveries of about 98.5 cents on the dollar, Matt said, a strong recovery for COFINA Senior bondholders from a board inclined to offer much more modest payouts.
Amit Patel, managing partner at Invictus Global Management, fondly recalled his experience of Matt’s COFINA work when he was portfolio manager at Whitebox Advisors, a large COFINA holder.
“He brought key leadership and vital creativity to a highly complex, years-long restructuring process that included a number of unprecedented variables," Patel said. "Matt was able to put himself inside the debtor’s shoes and take into account the big picture for Puerto Rico as he helped the group reach a successful deal."
Since the successful consummation of the COFINA deal, a group of Puerto Rico general obligation bond holders retained Matt to negotiate on their behalf. In June, the board released a GO plan support agreement that had been negotiated with Matt’s group.
When Matt joined Miller Buckfire in 2008, he mainly worked on corporate finance and restructuring but he has gradually shifted to include municipal work. He said he likes municipal work because unlike corporate work it “really affects people on Main Street.”
Matt said he liked his job because, “Every day is different and unpredictable. My job requires a very broad set of skills – everything from financial modeling, to negotiation, to oral and written communication. I can’t remember the last time I was bored at work.”