July 16, 2021
Distinguished Fiduciary Lands Complicated Case
With nearly 30 years of significant bankruptcy-industry experience, David Birdsell is a U.S. Chapter 7 Panel Trustee in the District of Arizona. Leveraging deep subject-matter expertise, he is often appointed as a Chapter 11 Trustee and examiner, and serves as an insolvency expert witness. Birdsell, managing partner for www.bkassets.com, an internet-auction company focused on selling bankruptcy assets for Chapter 7 and 11 trustees and receivers, is a licensed CPA. He specializes in bankruptcy and insolvency related tax and accounting issues and, among his many roles, is also a licensed real estate agent.
In 2003, Birdsell was appointed receiver as a result of a dispute among a group of insiders who held controlling interests in Bonanza Land Co., LLC and Primavera Orchards, Inc. The investors’ plan to build orchards and install an airstrip to deliver fruit to the Midwest (primarily Illinois and Ohio) never materialized due to the inability to comply with multiple environmental regulatory requirements. The ongoing battle resulted in multiple lawsuits with the investors suing one another and at one point filing a lawsuit against Birdsell himself. The contentious matter is known as one of the longest-running bankruptcy cases in Arizona.
Robust Banking Solution Needed For Disbursements
Over the next several years, there were numerous legal challenges and potential real estate deals that never materialized prolonging the matter. As a seasoned receiver and realtor, Birdsell secured a viable joint venture partner and eventually sold the 150 acres of land which resulted in a multi-million dollar recovery for the investors’ estates as the land eventually became more valuable than the bankruptcy claims. Nearly 15 years after the onset of his appointment on this case, Birdsell engaged Stretto to provide deposit management services and assist with complex financial distributions.
From our national network of partners, Stretto identified a bank that was best suited to fulfill the case’s specific cash-management needs. Our multi-disciplinary team of banking specialists and client service professionals easily navigated KYC hurdles to efficiently open multiple bank accounts and facilitate distributions. Stretto managed hundreds of wire and fund transfers to properly and swiftly allocate the $18m recovery to the appropriate beneficiaries.
As Stretto maintained business continuity and capacity during COVID-19 and the resulting remote work conditions, there wasn’t any disruption or delay to the distribution process. Because of Stretto’s consistent and responsive client service on this engagement, Birdsell and his staff were able to focus on other areas of their practice during the difficult operating conditions of 2020. Final distributions are expected in 2021, bringing an end to an incredibly long and drawn out case. Birdsell’s value as a receiver in this case was undeniable as the estate benefited from his vast industry experience and deft ability to ensure the largest returns possible.