Can Kent Swig Save Himself by Going Public?
Kent Swig, the New York developer whose fortunes this recession have dropped as fast as a boulder off a cliff, plans to rescue his flailing operation—and his creditors, to whom he owes about $50 million—by taking his company public, according to Crain’s New York Business:
The idea is to pool some of Mr. Swig’s properties into a [real estate investment trust], distribute shares to creditors and take the company public, sources said. Mr. Swig hired Virginia-based FBR Capital Markets to underwrite the security, and Keith Locker, chief executive of Manhattan-based Inlet Capital Management, as an adviser during the process.
Of course, forming a real estate investment trust would seem to presume that public investors want to buy shares of properties controlled by Mr. Swig, which, given his track record to date, might be optimistic. His failed ventures include, among others, the Sheffield57 condo conversion, his projects at 25 and 45 Broad Street, and, most recently, the Helmsley Spear commercial real estate brokerage.
As one analyst told The Observer, “Public market doesn’t equate to dumb money.”
Mr. Swig’s spokesman would only tell Crain’s, “The restructuring process is ongoing and confidential.”
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