Saturday, July 5, 2008

Is Laurelmor's Funding at Risk?

Don Tobin, publisher of a Florida real estate news media company, reported on July 2, 2008 that Ginn Clubs and Resorts had failed to make principal and interest payments on Credit Suisse sponsored loans that are funding the development of five Ginn communities.

Mr. Robert Gidel, President of the Ginn Company issued the following statement in response to Mr. Tobin’s news story:

Today, Standard & Poor’s will release a statement that indicates two Ginn affiliated Companies, Ginn-LA CS Borrower, LLC and Ginn-LA Conduit Lender, Inc. did not make a principal and interest payment on a non-recourse $675 million credit facility led by Credit Suisse. It will also state that we have reached a 30-day forbearance agreement and are actively negotiating with our lenders.
There are four communities involved in this credit facility:

Ginn-LA St. Lucie, Ltd., LLLP, which owns Tesoro
Ginn-LA Quail West, Ltd., LLLP, which owns Quail West
Ginn-LA Laurel Creek, Ltd., LLLP which owns Laurelmor
Ginn-La West End Limited, which owns Ginn sur Mer

Due to the ongoing slowdown in the residential real estate market, it became clear that it would not be possible to meet the homesite sales objectives necessary to make payments due under the credit facility. We have been discussing these issues with the lenders for the purpose of seeking ways to restructure the terms of the credit facility. Today’s announcement of the forbearance provides an environment for both us as borrowers and the lenders to continue to work toward a restructuring of the credit facility, which we believe will occur in the next 30 days and will permit each of the communities to be completed as planned. Even though sales throughout our industry have been lagging, nearly all development work has been completed at Tesoro and Quail West. While there is work left to do at Laurelmor, we have commenced work on much of the infrastructure, including the paving of miles of roadway and substantially completing the delivery of water and electric to the homesites.

Mr. Tobin’s article “Florida Real Estate Developer, Ginn Clubs and Resorts, Misses Principal and Interest Payments,” The LCD Report and Mr. Gidel’s statement can be found on

On April 3, 2008 Mr. Tobin wrote an article titled “The Lupert-Adler Connection-Where does Bobby Ginn’s Development Money Come from?” In the article Mr. Tobin stated:
I recently uncovered some information regarding the relationship between Ginn’s Company and the Lubert-Adler Fund, his long time funding source. The relationship extends beyond that of lender and borrower. An undated document attributed to Lubert-Adler, reports that they own 50% of The Ginn Company and 80% of each project. It also states that the Ginn Company is the only residential asset in the fund and is the largest component and best performing Asset in the fund over the past ten years.

Institutions reported to be investors in the fund include:

Wells Fargo
Kodak retirement plan
Duke University
Harvard University
Princeton University
Pennsylvania State Teachers fund
Ohio Police and Fire
City of Philadelphia

Since it was founded in 1997 by Dean Adler, Lubert-Adler has invested in over $15 billion in real estate assets, according to its website….Both Ginn and Lubert-Adler are private companies, making it difficult to get detailed and complete information, but the ties between the two are obviously strong and deep (as deep as Lubert-Adler’s pockets).

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