Court approves Celsius plan to repay 67% to 85% of customer claims

A New York bankruptcy judge today approved the proposed asset sale of troubled crypto lender Celsius Network to the Fahrenheit consortium that will allow customers to begin withdrawals of their claims.

Celsius Network has received the green light to seek creditor approval for its bankruptcy plan, which could potentially recover between 67% to 85% of their holdings.

According to the terms of the deal, individual custody account holders would receive their assets in two distributions, a move that would bring the bankruptcy case a step closer to conclusion. The first tranche would be distributed upfront, and the second installment is set to be paid by the end of the year upon plan resolution.

Chris Ferraro, now in charge of the company as interim CEO, said in an emailed statement that “we remain laser focused on creating the best outcome for customers and creditors and returning value as soon as possible,” under a Chapter 11 procedure that started in July 2022 and is being supervised by New York Bankruptcy Judge Martin Glenn.

Creditors of Celsius will receive ballots to vote on the proposed asset sale plan, which entails selling assets to a consortium that includes Arrington Capital and U.S. Bitcoin Corp. The voting period will take place from August 24 to September 22. If approved, creditors could expect varying returns in the form of Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH), ranging from 67% for Earn Account holders to 85.6% for participants in Celsius’ Earn Program. This stands in contrast to the alternative option of asset liquidation, which would result in a lower recovery of around 47%, as outlined in court documents.

As reported by Bloomberg, the projected worth of the asset distribution hovers around a substantial $2 billion. Judge Glenn, not content with mere approval, further instructed Celsius to offer a straightforward explanation of the settlement terms. Furthermore, Celsius has been asked to provide detailed information surrounding the inherent volatility of cryptocurrencies and the possible hurdles that its mining operations might face.

Although there are pockets of resistance among certain creditors, the officially appointed committee championing the interests of junior creditors has thrown its weight behind the plan. This committee is set to endorse Celsius’ customers’ participation in favor of the proposed blueprint.

Participation in the settlement is essentially automatic for Celsius’ customers, with the opt-out option available for those who wish to abstain. Legal representation for Celsius, Chris Koenig, told Bloomberg that disbursements could potentially kickstart before the year’s conclusion.

Should the plan secure the final seal of approval, it will still require subsequent court ratification, a decision that is tentatively expected to be rendered come October.