Photo of Craig A. Wolfe

Craig A. Wolfe

Partner
New York
T: 212.634.3071
F: 917.438.6130

Industries

Education

  • J.D., Yale Law School
  • B.A., University of California, Berkeley, highest distinction
  • California
  • District of Columbia
  • New York
Overview
Honors
Thought Leadership

Craig Wolfe is a partner in the Financing and Bankruptcy Practice Group in the firm's New York office. 

Areas of Practice

His practice focuses on the maritime industry. Craig represents lenders and borrowers in maritime transactions. He also represents sellers and purchasers of all types of marine assets ranging from ships, barges, dry docks, cranes, winches, fabrication equipment, and operating shipyards and fleets. Because his matters are frequently in the context of bankruptcy and out-of-court workout situations, he is well-versed in risks associated with the maritime industry and in particular, the current industry downturn. Craig has been involved in a multitude of liquidations of shipyards and both blue water and brown water shipping companies, both foreign and domestic. 

Craig’s focus on the maritime industry is a result of his thirteen years as the CEO of a maritime company that owned and operated a fleet of ten oilfield service vessels and a shipyard that dry docked and repaired its own fleet and outside vessels. He held a U.S. Coast Guard Master’s license for over two decades and has operated most types of vessels, including dry docks.  Craig is a graduate of U.C. Berkeley and Yale Law School. The following are a few examples of Craig’s recently transactions.

Craig represented a secured creditor that held a preferred ship mortgage on the main dry dock at a shipyard in Connecticut.  The shipyard was in the final phases of a liquidation in its second bankruptcy in four years, and the broker that had been retained to sell the dry dock had been unable to attract any meaningful bids. Taking over the sale process, the Bankruptcy Court authorized Craig to market the dry dock using his own book of contacts, operate it for prospective bidders, conduct the auction, and close the sale to the highest bidder. The shipyard’s principals had opposed having Craig operate the dry dock for the bidders, but the Court overruled the objections and authorized him to proceed. The process was highly successful, and the auction resulted in an almost a tripling of the initial bid. The secured creditor was paid in full. 

Craig also represented first the creditors’ committee and then the debtor after the chapter 11 plan of liquidation was confirmed in the bankruptcy case of Bender Shipbuilding of Mobile Alabama. He handled the sale of Bender’s Mobile shipyard assets and its shipyard in Tampico Mexico. The transaction required Bankruptcy Court approval, MARAD approval of the transfer of the U.S. flagged dock to a buyer in Mexico, and a closing that Craig led in international waters. 

Craig represented a seller in a non-bankruptcy acquisition of another shipyard. The sale was necessitated by cost overruns on multiple complex shipbuilding contracts valued in excess of $200 million. 

Craig also served as counsel to the official committees of unsecured creditors in the bankruptcy cases of Toisa Limited (ocean shipping/offshore oil) (New York), TMT Shipping (Houston), B+H Ocean Carriers (New York), U.S. Shipping (New York), Derecktor Shipyards (Connecticut), Hawaii Superferry (Delaware), and Bender Shipbuilding (Alabama). 

Craig has substantial experience in advising clients on and litigating over vessel construction contracts that provide for either transfer of title upon commencement of construction, transfer upon delivery, and hybrid rolling transfer of title. He also advises on security interests related to shipbuilding contracts in the context of secured transactions. 

Craig has also overseen the sale of entire fleets that continue to trade and the sale and demolition and scrapping of ocean going vessels. 

In addition to serving as debtor’s counsel in numerous out of court workout situations, Mr. Wolfe served as chapter 11 debtor's counsel for companies outside the maritime industry such as Relativity Media (television and motion picture), Contessa Premium Foods (seafood import and food manufacturing), Compressus (healthcare software), Warnaco (apparel), Owens Corning (building materials), Horizon PCS (telecom), Federal Mogul (automotive parts manufacturing), Imagyn Medical Technologies (medical devices), Aragon Engineering (automotive parts manufacturing) and the Everyday convenience store chain (gas stations and convenience stores).

Honors

  • •Recipient of the Turnaround Management Association's Transaction of the Year - Mid-Size Company Award for his work as counsel to Contessa Premium Foods, Inc.
  • •Recommended in US Legal 500 for his work in the Corporate Restructuring area, 2010, 2012, 201

Events