Ezra Merkin’s cache of Rothkos and Giacomettis has come in handy today as news emerges that the humiliated financier sold his art collection for $310 million. The proceeds of the sale available to Madoff’s victims will be a bit less. Bloomberg has a break down of the costs:
According to court papers, there is a lien on artworks held by PaceWildenstein LLC, as agent for Rothko’s children, Kate Rothko Prizel and Christopher Rothko, for $42 million, and a lien held by HSBC Bank USA, N.A. for $19.3 million on certain property, including 14 lesser works of art.
In addition, PaceWildenstein will receive a fee of $11 million for advising the buyer, the court papers say, and TLIA LLC will get $26.5 million for advising the seller.
Of the $211 million left, $19.2 million will be taken out for taxes expected to be due on the sale of the artwork, as well as other expenses, including legal fees directly related to the sale.
We’re curious who TLIA LLC is and why their fee is so much. Is it Ben Heller who put the collection together or someone more obvious?