Fresh Lawsuit Filed Over Goldin Hong Kong Tower

The sale of Goldin Financial Global Center appears not to be a done deal yet (Source: Savills)

News in late September that Goldin Financial Global Center had finally been sold after a two-year fight over the Hong Kong office tower appears to have been premature, according to local media reports of a new legal case related to the property.

The buyer of the 28-story building in Kowloon East, identified as HG Real Estate Investment Hong Kong Co Ltd, says he was notified on November 1 by trustees who owned the property that the H$6.7 billion purchase-sale agreement Kong ($850 million) would be canceled and that HG’s 250 million Hong Kong dollar deposit would be forfeited, according to an account by the news site HK01who cited court documents.

HG has filed a petition in the High Court against the tower’s trustees asking the court to issue an order to enforce the purchase agreement and bar the trustees from selling the 852,501-square-foot (79,200-square-meter) tower, HK01 said. The recipients had not responded to requests for comment from Mingtiandi at the time of publication.

The latest turn of events comes after a Sept. 21 social media post from Savills stating that the 2016 vintage tower was “SOLD” and the transaction a “DEAL DONE” without providing details on pricing. or the identity of the buyer. The real estate services company had arranged for a building bid on behalf of creditors swindled by the defaulting mainland conglomerate Goldin Financial. Savills representatives did not respond to inquiries from Mingtiandi about the reported failure of the transaction.

Ringtones of past failures

The apparently aborted sale has a familiar ring to fans of the Goldin Financial Global Center saga, coming after several false starts.

Goldin boss Pan Sutong’s old trophy is in limbo again

In late 2020, in a move seen by some observers as an attempt to block administrators from bidding on the building, Goldin announced that a businessman by the name of “Fong Tim” had agreed to buy the building at 17 Kai Cheung Road in Kowloon Bay, stalling creditor moves. When that sale failed, and after a protracted legal battle was declared void, the purported buyer was forced to forfeit a deposit of HK$2.03 billion.

A new offer for the building was released in May this year, with media reports in September naming local development giant Nan Fung as the buyer. Representatives for Savills denied naming Nan Fung as the buyer and declined to provide further details about the sale. Inquiries to Nan Fung in September went unanswered.

At the reported price of HK$6.7 billion, the A-grade asset would sell 44 percent below the Minimum of HK$12 billion established in an initial tender that began in September 2020 after receivers seized the property in July of that year, valued at HK$7,859 per square foot.

distressed building

Reportedly 30 percent vacant as of May this year, Goldin’s former Trophy has struggled as a high-spec building in a secondary location within the emerging Kowloon East shopping mall at a time when occupants have reduced their footprints and investors have kept their checkbooks under lock and key.

Cushman & Wakefield reported that the office lease in Hong Kong saw a rebound in the third quarterwith tenants renting more space than they vacated during the period, led by continued demand from operators for flexible workspaces.

Occupants rented 183,000 square feet more than they returned in the July-September period, compared with a contraction of 176,900 square feet in the previous three months, the property consultant said.

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