Oct. 30 - OGX, the energy company controlled by former Brazilian billionaire Eike Batista, files for Latin America's largest-ever corporate bankruptcy protection. Conway G. Gittens reports.
PLEASE NOTE: THIS EDIT CONTAINS CONVERTED 4:3 MATERIAL Eike Batista used to fill the headlines as Brazil's richest man but now the papers are splashed with his troubles - the former billionaire is now involved in the largest corporate bankruptcy filing Latin America has ever seen. His energy company OGX, saddled with $5.1 billion in debt, officially filed for bankruptcy protection on Wednesday. Some creditors include U.S. investment funds PIMCO and Black Rock. Offices of parent company EBX had to be boarded up after protesters let out their frustration after missed bond payments and diminishing wealth added to plunging investor confidence. Brazilian businessman Adriano Pires says Batista's bravado was too big. SOUNDBITE: ADRIANO PIRES, BRAZILIAN BUSINESSMAN (PORTUGUESE WITH ENGLISH TRANSLATION) SAYING: "He was involved in too many projects and he would wrap up on project and was starting another one without solidifying the previous one. Later, he started getting involved in projects that really didn't have any synergy. He purchased a ship, he became an associate in Rock in Rio, of Maracana (Stadium). Those things do not have any synergy with the businesses having to do with infrastructure." What a drop! Batista was so powerful that when his now bankrupt company OGX unveiled expansion plans - Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff was right by his side. His brashness also led him to predict that he would one day become the world's wealthiest tycoon, but that was before $30 billion in wealth evaporated over the last 18 months. Batista now spends his days dismantling the conglomerate he spent years creating.