Bankruptcy trustees and advisors earned 67 million from bankrupt DSB Bank

The fact that the costs rose so high is apparent from the final report that DSB Bank trustees Rutger Schimmelpenninck and Ben Knüppe presented today.

Bankruptcy in 2009

DSB, the financial institution of entrepreneur Dirk Scheringa, became discredited in 2009 and went bankrupt in the autumn of that year. It took the trustees twelve years to settle the bankruptcy.

After the recent sale of the last loan and mortgage portfolios, the trustees were recently able to make a final payment to DSB Bank’s creditors. Those creditors have received their full credit back.

Money left

In the end, the trustees sold the portfolios so favorably that even an amount of 650 million euros remains in the bankrupt estate of DSB Bank. That money will be used to also pay the interest owed by the creditors.

In total there is 785 million in interest claims, so not all of that will be reimbursed. The largest claim, of about 700 million, is in the hands of De Nederlandsche Bank (DNB), which at the time compensated DSB Bank savers up to an amount of 100,000 euros.

DNB recovered these costs from the Dutch banks, and will also return the expected interest payment to the banks.

A small portion of the remaining millions will go to 280,000 former bank account holders. “Some people are entitled to a few cents of interest, others to larger amounts.”

67 million for trustees

The report also shows that the winding-up of the bankruptcy has benefited the trustees and their advisers. In total, the trustees, the law firm Houthoff and the accountancy firm PWC invoiced an amount of more than 67.1 million euros to the bankrupt estate.

Houthoff provided legal and tax advice during the settlement. PWC provided services in the fields of accountancy, tax and IT and sales advice.

A lot of work done

According to curator Knüppe, that amount is indeed high, but justifiable. “I will be the first to acknowledge that that is a lot of money. But then a lot had to be done. A very large amount of work has been done. And as far as the curator salaries are concerned, they have always been set by the court. That’s how this works sort of things.”

Knüppe says that the costs for the trustees and their advisers are relatively limited in relation to the other costs incurred. According to the trustee, the costs for the entire management system in Wognum that managed the loan portfolios in recent years were higher.

Cost for benefit

“Moreover, as far as I am concerned, it is not news. In recent years we have always been completely transparent about our costs and activities. Ten years ago it was already known that the costs would outweigh the benefits.”

After bankruptcy, the receivers must sell the healthy business units and/or valuable items such as stocks, trademark rights and real estate. They are paid from the money that this generates and the creditors are partially compensated.

They also investigate the causes of the bankruptcy, and possibly claim money from liable parties.

Damage claim Scheringa

The trustees of DSB Bank will not comment on the claim for damages that former owner Dirk Scheringa claims to have against the Ministry of Finance, De Nederlandsche Bank and the Netherlands Authority for the Financial Markets. According to the entrepreneur, the bank’s demise was unnecessary, and the result of their mistakes.

“We are not there,” says Schimmelpenninck. “We have no judgment or information about that.”

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