FTX Europe Gets Green Light to Sell While Lawyers Lay Groundwork to Reopen Exchange
The exchange could look to reopen as soon as next year, FTX’s legal team said in court Wednesday
Kiran Jyothi VP/Shutterstock modified by Blockworks
A Swiss court has given FTX the greenlight to look into selling the global exchange’s distressed European arm, its debtors said on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, its bankruptcy attorneys claim the exchange could relaunch as early as 2024.
In a hearing Wednesday in Delaware, FTX counsel Andy Dietderich, partner at Sullivan & Cromwell LLP, said the exchange had recovered $7.3 billion in assets and can now start to think about a reboot.
FTX, the exchange’s parent company, has a US arm known as FTX.US, though the $7.3 billion figure applies to the exchange as a whole.
The exchange could look to reopen as soon as next year, Dietderich said during Wednesday’s hearing, depending on available funding. Assets recovered so far have been frozen, pending court approval of FTX’s creditor payout plan, which could be a lengthy process
Reopening FTX’s trading doors could be a part of the plan, according to Dietderich in the hearing. Reuters reported details of the court proceeding.
FTX’s legal team has been laying the groundwork to potentially relaunch the exchange, bankruptcy court filings show. The now-shuttered exchange’s February legal bills, released as part of its compensation report filings this week, show debtors shelled out almost $30 million to six separate law firms in a month.
Sullivan & Cromwell collected $13.5 million from FTX in February for various tasks, including looking into “long-term options” for the exchange.
The bill items and Dietderish’s comments fall in line with previous statements from the exchange, which filed for Chapter 11 in November. In January, FTX’s new CEO John Ray said the exchange could restart at some point.
Wednesday’s hearing comes after a Swiss court granted FTX Europe AG approval to explore selling the European arm of the exchange.
The moratorium allows the exchange to look into alternatives for the future of its business, including a potential sale, per Swiss law.
FTX Europe AG is still listed as a debtor in the exchange’s US bankruptcy proceedings. Swiss courts noted that fact when granting the moratorium, meaning that the entity will have to abide by the creditor repayment plan, once approved.
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