Briggs & Stratton Corporation and its debtor affiliates seek approval from the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Missouri to employ Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP as their attorneys.
The firm will render these professional services to the Debtors:
(a) prepare on behalf of the Debtors, as debtors-in-possession, all necessary motions, applications, answers, orders, reports and other papers in connection with the administration of the Debtors’ estates;
(b) take all necessary actions in connection with any chapter 11 plan and related disclosure statement and all related documents, and such further actions as may be required in connection with the administration of the Debtors’ estates;
(c) take all necessary action to protect and preserve the Debtors’ estates;
(d) perform all other necessary legal services in connection with the prosecution of these chapter 11 cases; provided, however, that to the extent Weil determines that such services fall outside of the scope of services historically or generally performed by Weil as lead debtors’ counsel in a bankruptcy case, Weil will file a supplemental declaration.
Weil will work with Carmody MacDonald P.C., the Debtors’ local counsel, and the Debtors’ other professionals to ensure a clear delineation of each firm’s respective roles in connection with representation of the Debtors in these chapter 11 cases to prevent duplication of services.
The hourly rates of the firm’s attorneys and paraprofessionals are as follows:
Partners and counsel $1,100 – $1,695
Associates $595 – $1,050
Paraprofessionals $250 – $435
Weil also intends to seek reimbursement for expenses incurred in connection with its representation of the Debtors.
During the 90-day period prior to the Petition Date, Weil received payments and advances in the aggregate amount of $8,962,940.50 for services performed and expenses incurred, and also to be performed and incurred, including in preparation for the commencement of these Chapter 11 Cases.
As of the Petition Date, the Debtors did not owe Weil any fees for professional services performed or expenses incurred.
The following is provided in response to the request for additional information set forth in Paragraph D.1 of the Fee Guidelines.
Question: Did you agree to any variations from, or alternatives to, your standard or customary billing arrangements for this engagement?
Question: Do any of the professionals included in this engagement vary their rate based on the geographic location of the bankruptcy case?
Question: If you represented the client in the twelve (12) months prepetition, disclose your billing rates and material financial terms for the prepetition engagement, including any adjustments during the twelve (12) months prepetition. If your billing rates and material financial terms have changed post-petition, explain the difference and the reasons for the difference.
Response: Weil’s billing rates and material financial terms with respect to this matter have not changed since the Debtors engaged Weil in April, 2020.
Question: Has your client approved your prospective budget and staffing plan, and, if so, for what budget period?
Response: Weil is developing a prospective budget and staffing plan for these chapter 11 cases. Weil and the Debtors will review such budget following the close of the budget period to determine a budget for the following period.
Ronit J. Berkovich, a partner of the firm of Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP, disclosed in court filings that the firm is a “disinterested person” within the meaning of Bankruptcy Code section 101(14).
The firm can be reached through:
Ronit J. Berkovich, Esq.
Debora A. Hoehne, Esq.
Martha E. Martir, Esq.
WEIL, GOTSHAL & MANGES LLP
767 Fifth Avenue
New York, NY 10153
Telephone: (212) 310-8000
Facsimile: (212) 310-8007
About Briggs & Stratton Corporation
Briggs & Stratton Corporation is a producer of gasoline engines for outdoor power equipment and a designer, manufacturer and marketer of power generation, pressure washer, lawn and garden, turf care, and job site products. The Company’s products are marketed and serviced in more than 100 countries on six continents through 40,000 authorized dealers and service organizations.
Briggs & Stratton Corporation and four affiliates concurrently filed voluntary petitions for relief under Chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Code (Bankr. E.D. Mo. Lead Case No. 20-43597) on July 20, 2020. The petitions were signed by Mark A. Schwertfeger, senior vice president and chief financial officer. At the time of the filing, Briggs & Stratton Corporation disclosed total assets of $1,589,398,000 and total liabilities of $1,350,058,000 as of March 29, 2020.
Hon. Barry S. Schermer oversees the cases.
The Debtors tapped Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP as bankruptcy counsel; Carmody MacDonald P.C. as local counsel; Foley & Lardner LLP as corporate counsel; Houlihan Lokey Inc. as investment banker; Ernst & Young, LLP as restructuring and tax advisor; Deloitte LLP as auditor and tax consultant; and Kurtzman Carson Consultants, LLC as claims and noticing agent.