FTX Lawyers, Advisors Are Making Serious Bank: Tally’s at Almost $20 Million for 51 Days of Work

It’s taken thousands of partner-level billable hours, so far, just to unravel the tight knot that’s been FTX’s bankruptcy proceedings. FTX has so far racked up $19.6 million in fees to its bankruptcy, legal, and financial advisors, mostly for work done in November 2022 when the crypto exchange fell and filed for bankruptcy protection.

According to Tuesday’s bankruptcy court filings, the law firms billing FTX are Sullivan & Cromwell, Landis Rath & Cobb, and Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan. Additionally, professional advisor Alvarez & Marsal and financial advisor AlixPartner have also billed the company.

Sullivan & Cromwell, one of two of the exchange’s primary legal firms, billed FTX for over 6,500 billable hours from November 12 to 30, amounting to over $9.5 million. The filings show that about half of the amount, or $4.8 million, is for the work of the more than two dozen partners assigned to the FTX case, with lead attorney Jim Bromley billing over 178 hours.

Landis Rath & Cobb meanwhile, the other primary legal firm, charged $1.16 million for work done in the period between November 11 to 30. Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan billed FTX over $1.5 million for work done in November and December.

READ: FTX’s Former In-House Lawyer Said FTX US Is Solvent, So Why Did It File For Bankruptcy?

Professional services firm Alvarez & Marsal charged $1.9 million for 2,300 hours of work on analyzing the company’s holding using blockchain explorers and reviewing undefined cybersecurity scenarios. While financial consultants AlixPartners are seeking $1.1 million for work done from November 28 to December 31.

The hours that advisors, including dozens of partners who charge the higher fees per hour, billed across the different firms involved were largely focused on understanding and analyzing FTX’s complex global asset base to see where funds can be recovered. 

In early January, Andy Dietderich of Sullivan & Cromwell told the bankruptcy court that they were able to recover $5 billion in liquid assets almost two months into beginning their analysis.

According to an interim compensation order, FTX’s advisors are paid 80% of their billed fees if no objection is filed. They will be paid the full amount when the bankruptcy process ends and the firms can file the final fee application.

Information for this briefing was found via CNBC and the sources mentioned. The author has no securities or affiliations related to this organization. Not a recommendation to buy or sell. Always do additional research and consult a professional before purchasing a security. The author holds no licenses.

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