Unclaimed Funds Pose Profit Potential for Bittrex’s Bankruptcy

Unclaimed Funds Pose Profit Potential for Bittrex's Bankruptcy

Unclaimed Funds Pose Profit Potential for Bittrex’s Bankruptcy

Bittrex, which filed for bankruptcy in May, may still be profitable because consumers are not claiming their funds

The U.S. Secret Service was a significant patron, with millions in the cryptocurrency exchange. 

Most crypto bankruptcies are tales of anguish and loss: Anguished ex-customers of FTX or Celsius sign up and hope to recover a portion of their holdings one day. 

Not so for Bittrex’s U.S. subsidiary, which is having trouble convincing over a million creditors to shut up and accept their money, potentially resulting in a profitable Chapter 11 bankruptcy estate. 

Since May, and now that the deadline for filing a claim has passed, just under 36,000 customers have withdrawn approximately $143 million worth of cryptocurrency, the company’s attorney told a Delaware court Wednesday. 

After the company’s U.S. and Maltese branches filed for bankruptcy in May, emails were sent to a small portion of its 1.6 million customers, imploring them to withdraw. 

“One of the questions we wanted to answer was why our participation rates are so low,” Tomasco said, adding that some customers may have been reluctant to provide the additional personal information required for anti-money laundering checks to claim a relatively modest amount.

They are genuinely making a calculated choice. 

Unexpectedly, one of the principal holders who requested their dollars back was a branch of the United States government; however, the court was informed that sufficient funds would be available. 

“With $6.2 million, the Secret Service was one of our largest accounts,” Tomasco said. We collaborated with that organization for them to effectively withdraw that sum. 

“I believe there will be leftover funds” for the estate, Tomasco said, despite having to pay bankruptcy administration costs and prospective fines owed to regulators responsible for enforcing sanctions and securities law. 

Although he was not asked to render a decision on a purely informational point, Judge Brendan Shannon is as confused as everyone else

“This instance has peculiar characteristics,” Shannon stated. “Every crypto case does.” 

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