More than 50 per cent of General Motors Corp. bondholders said yesterday they would support a sweetened deal to swap the company’s $27-billion US debt for stock in a restructured, leaner GM.

According to a statement from a group of ad hoc institutional bondholders, 54 per cent of GM bondholders met a Saturday deadline to exchange their unsecured bonds for a 10 per cent stake in a newly restructured company and warrants to purchase a greater share of the new GM at a later date.

That agreement should make the automaker’s reorganization go more smoothly after it enters bankruptcy protection, as is expected today in New York.

 

The move is seen as one of the critical last steps in GM’s path to enter bankruptcy protection in hopes to quickly exit a slimmer, more effective automaker. The company has been working through the weekend to make its final decisions on how to proceed with a court filing.