Just weeks after the latest failed sale of the Goldin Financial Global Centre, joint provisional liquidators have taken full control of Hong Kong-listed Goldin Financial Holdings.
The firm’s security trustee, Deutsche Bank affiliate DB Trustees (Hong Kong) Ltd, on 30 September had asked for an order from the Supreme Court of Bermuda to expand the liquidators’ powers, Goldin Financial said Wednesday in a filing with the Hong Kong stock exchange.
The court declared on 28 October that the powers of Goldin’s directors and officers had ceased completely and would be transferred to the liquidators, with the directors retaining only limited powers relating to the ongoing winding-up proceedings against the company.
In addition, the liquidators announced that the principal place of business of Goldin Financial in Hong Kong has been changed to the 11th floor of Lee Garden Two in Causeway Bay, a location corresponding to the address of accounting giant Grant Thornton’s local office.
Goldin’s creditors have sought to wind up the company since filing a petition with the Bermuda court in August 2020, but the proceedings stalled amid a series of delays that continue to the present day.
In July, Hong Kong’s high court ordered Goldin Financial’s former chairman, Pan Sutong, to wind up his own holding firm and file for bankruptcy after the mainland tycoon failed to repay HK$8 billion ($1 billion) borrowed five years earlier to finance the privatisation of his Goldin Properties Holdings.
Two months later, the Goldin Financial Global Centre seemed to have finally sold after a two-year struggle for the Kowloon East office tower, but this month the apparent buyer filed a lawsuit claiming that the sale and purchase agreement had been terminated by the building’s receivers.
The aborted sale had a familiar ring to followers of the Goldin saga, coming after several false starts.
In late 2020, in a move seen by some observers as an attempt to block the receivers’ tender of the building, Goldin announced that a businessman under the name “Fong Tim” had agreed to buy the building at 17 Kai Cheung Road in Kowloon Bay, stalling moves by creditors. When that sale failed to proceed, and after a protracted legal battle was declared void, the purported buyer was forced to forfeit a HK$2.03 billion deposit.
A fresh tender for the building was launched in May of this year, with media reports in September naming local development giant Nan Fung as the buyer. Representatives of Savills denied naming Nan Fung as the buyer and declined to provide further details on the sale. Inquiries to Nan Fung in September went unanswered.
PwC Reportedly Seizes Asset
On Thursday, local newspaper The Standard reported that a Hong Kong residential project partly owned by Pan had been seized by PricewaterhouseCoopers.
Grand Homm in Kowloon’s Ho Man Tin area terminated the sales of 32 units on 15 November, according to documents cited by The Standard, which said tenders for 31 of the units were to start on 14 November.
Since 2019, Grand Homm has sold 19 units — less than 5 percent of the total 401 homes — after nine buyers cancelled their deals, the paper said.