Marina d’Or’s Real Estate Company Capitalises Debt Amounting to €11.1M

7 October 2018 – Valencia Plaza

On Friday, the Official Gazette of the Mercantile Registry reflected a capital increase amounting to €11.1 million undertaken by the company Comercializadora Mediterránea de Viviendas SL. In other words, Comervi, the real estate company behind Marina d’Or, which said no more by way of explanation to this newspaper than: the manoeuvre came as a response to a “conversion of debt into capital” – without offering any more details -.

This possibility had been contemplated in the agreement signed by the company and its creditors to emerge from the bankruptcy proceedings, as explained by this newspaper. Specifically, the agreement gave the creditors a choice between collecting the debt with a discount of 65% over a period of 10 years and the option of capitalising their loans and going on to become shareholders of the company.

Depending on who has signed this capital increase for the real estate firm behind Marina d’Or – controlled in its entirety by Jesús Ger to date – a new shareholder may have joined the fold. Nevertheless, the possibility that the capitalisation has been subscribed by a company owned by the Catalan businessman himself has not been ruled out.

In fact, as stated in Comervi’s most recent financial statements – corresponding to 2017 – the company has debt amounting to €55.8 million with “related companies”, as detailed in note 13 of the annual accounts.

When asked about this, sources at Sareb – which according to Marina d’Or is Comervi’s main private creditor – explained to Valencia Plaza on Friday that the entity agreed to apply the aforementioned discount of 65% to the amount owed by the company and that, as a result, the bad bank is not the entity that has capitalised the €11.1 million.

In the same vein, Banco Sabadell explained to this newspaper that its agreement with Comervi was written off following the handover to the financial institution of 40 apartments and one warehouse, as this newspaper revealed.

It has also been ruled out that the capitalisation has been carried out by the Tax Authorities or Social Security – the other two major creditors of Comervi – given that the State does not make a habit of becoming a shareholder in private companies that have filed for creditor bankruptcy.

Original story: Valencia Plaza (by Dani Valero)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Jesús Ger Starts Building Homes Again in Marina d’Or

24 May 2018 – Expansión

New homes are being built again in one of the major symbols of urban development along the Spanish coast: Marina d’Or. The developer and owner of a large proportion of the popular resort town of Oropesa (Castellón), Jesús Ger, has launched his first housing development, after more than a decade of paralysis due to the real estate crisis.

The new residential block will have 11 storeys and will house 286 apartments on one of the last remaining unbuilt plots on the beachfront of the tourist complex.

Nevertheless, the return to real estate activity has not materialised through the companies traditionally linked to Marina d’Or, but instead is being carried out by Inseryal, the property developer whose sole administrator is Sandra Rodrigues, the wife of Jesús Ger.

Inseryal has already started off-plan marketing of the homes in the so-called Edificio Miramar. The apartments, all of which are going to have two bedrooms in theory, will go on sale for upwards of €129,000 plus VAT. At those asking prices, the new block should generate revenues of at least €37 million for the property developer, which expects to complete this project in June 2020.

The first development in Marina d’Or since the crisis comes at the same time as the completion of the bankruptcy proceedings of Comervi, Ger’s main real estate company, which approved its creditors’ agreement a few weeks ago. The group became one of the most famous developers of holiday homes in Spain, with turnover of €345 million in 2007. Despite the debt, Ger has withstood the lean times thanks to the other branch of his business, tourist accommodation.

Original story: Expansión (by A.C.A.)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Marina d’Or’s RE Company Reaches Agreement with Creditors to Emerge from Bankruptcy

12 April 2018 – El Economista

Marina D’Or has managed to convince the creditors of its real estate company, Comercializadora Mediterránea de Viviendas (Comervi), to give their approval to an agreement that will allow it to emerge from bankruptcy, which began in 2014 with a liability of around €600 million. In the case of the ordinary loans, two options are being offered: a discount of 65% and the payment of the balance in 10 years time; or the capitalisation of the debt into shares in the company.

The group led by Jesús Ger has already reached an agreement with Sareb and is going to negotiate another specific deal with the Tax Authorities.

The agreement must be ratified by the judge, a process that is expected to take between two and three months. On 6 May 2014, the Judge of Mercantile Court number 1 in Castellón accepted Comervi’s voluntary creditor bankruptcy, following the suspension of sales and of the construction plans for new apartments.

Thanks to this new agreement with its creditors, the firm “faces a future with positive prospects”, highlight sources at the entity.

Original story: El Economista (by Olivia Fontanillo)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Tax Authorities Seize Assets From Marina D’Or’s Owner

4 January 2017 – Expansión

The Tax Agency (Aeat), one of the largest creditors of the real estate group created around the holiday resort Marina D’Or, has decided to take action. The Ministry of Finance has approved the precautionary seizure of assets from several companies owned by the founder and owner of the Castellón complex, Jesús Ger (pictured above), amounting to €49 million.

The measure is based on the fact that the Tax Agency considers that the Castellón group performed an “asset emptying” operation of its largest company in 2010, to stop the possible collection of debt that it held by carving out its activity into several companies.

The debt originally corresponded to the company Comercializadora Mediterránea de Viviendas (Comervi), the property developer and construction company that suspended its payments in 2014 and which appears on the tax authority’s list of largest debtors. Months before the insolvency, it changed what had been its historical name, Marina D’Or-Loger, under which it had promoted and constructed the popular holiday resort.

In 2010, Ger restructured the group’s parent company and divided its activity into four companies to prevent the real estate crisis from dragging down its hotels and the tourist business at the complex next to the beach in Oropesa del Mar (Castellón).

Controversial carve-out

That operation is what has caused the Central Taxpayers Office to claim the amount owed by Comervia (€57.48 million) from two other companies owned by Ger: Gestión Cartera Castellón – which was the owner of the shares in Marina D’Or-Loger until the segregation and which assumed ownership of the hotels and other businesses – and Golf Playas Castellón – owner of the macro-urban Marina D’Or Golf project, which Wanda expressed an interest in -.

In June 2016, the Administration approved an agreement whereby Gestión Cartera and Golf Playas assumed “joint and several liability” for the debt, taking responsibility for €47.9 million and €1 million, respectively.

A few months earlier, in March, the Ministry of Finance had already notified both entities that it had seized their shares in the companies “in a provisional and precautionary way” and “100% of the full ownership and usufruct of the real estate assets, homes, apartments, parking spaces and land” registered in Castellón, Benidorm and Oropesa.

Failed appeals

The two companies and the businessman himself then filed special appeals with the Superior Court of Justice (TSJ) of Madrid. In the three appeals, the plaintiffs contended that their fundamental rights had been violated as they were not guaranteed any right of defence or access to a hearing. The three cases were dismissed by the court.

According to the list of events included in the rulings, Aeat considers that as a result of the carve-outs and company operations of the former Marina D’Or-Loger, €327 million of net assets were removed from the company. That meant that it was left with negative equity of €140 million at the end of 2010, which was one of the factors that led to its subsequent bankruptcy. Moreover, the most recent appraisal reports from the Ministry of Finance value the properties that Comervi used to guarantee its tax debts to delay and split the payment at just €19.47 million, which is “well below the total tax debt of almost €58 million”. The properties were initially assigned a value of €96 million.

Sources at Marina D’Or indicated yesterday that they had achieved an agreement with the Tax Authorities “whereby their precautionary seizures will be rendered ineffective” and that they have not been carried out “and so they would not have any affect on the activity” of its companies.

Original story: Expansión (by A.C.A)

Translation: Carmel Drake

Sareb Curbs Marina d’Or Bankruptcy For 260 Homes

9 March 2016 – Economía Digital

Observers are adopting a wait-and-see policy regarding the final resolution of Comercializadora Mediterránea de Viviendas (Comervi), the development company behind Marina d’Or, owned by Jesús Ger, which filed for voluntary bankruptcy in Commercial Court 1 in Castellón in May 2014.

Everything depends on the decision to be taken by the judge regarding the purchase option submitted by Sareb, the main creditor of Comervi, for 260 homes in the holiday resort, distributed across several developments.

Only then will we know whether the negotiations will resume between the company and the two main creditors, the bad bank itself, chaired by Jaime Echegoyen and Banco Sabadell. The judge’s decision will determine the outcome of the two possible alternatives on offer: try to reach an agreement with the creditors or push ahead with the liquidation of the company.

Sareb and Banco Sabadell are the creditors

Comervi has accumulated financial debt amounting to €125 million. Most of this liability, around €80 million, relates to loans that Sareb received three years ago from Bankia, Banco de Valencia and the former Caixa Galicia.

Almost all of the debt that the construction company, owned by Jesús Ger, holds with Sabadell, around €16 million in total, comes from the loans it inherited from CAM, covered by the Asset Protection Scheme (EPA) that Sabadell received when it acquired the Alicante-based entity in December 2011. This coverage will absorb most of the losses until 2021, ten years after the date it was awarded.

The most indebted company in the Commuity of Valencia

Besides its financial debt, Comervi, the construction company responsible for building the facilities at the Marina d’Or holiday resort, took the honour of being named the Valencian firm that owed the most money to the Public Treasury – more than €46 million – according to the list that the Tax Authorities published at the end of December.

Comervi, which used to be called Construcciones Castellón 2000 and was then called Marina d’Or Loger, was constituted in 1983 by Jesús Ger, who at the time, sold electrical appliances, in order to benefit from the enormous opportunities offered by the construction of apartments on the Castellón coast.

The banks tried to avoid bankruptcy but Ger responded with a solution that was not viable for the creditors, with discounts of more than 50%, the long-term maturity of the remaining debt and even a request for liquidity to take on new projects.

Sareb and the banks said no and the businessman himself decided to file for voluntary bankruptcy for the company.

Original story: Economía Digital (by Juan Carlos Martínez)

Translation: Carmel Drake