AmBase, former investor in 111 West 57th Street, could face ruin

Annual report notes “substantial doubt about the Company's ability to continue”

TRD New York /
Mar.March 30, 2018 06:11 PM

111 West 57th Street (credit: Hayes Davidson)

Less than a year after AmBase Corporation lost its stake in the supertall condominium project 111 West 57th Street, the Connecticut-based holding company may be going under.

In its latest annual report filed Friday, the company said revenues and cash reserves “may not be sufficient to cover operating cash needs through the 12-month period from the financial statement reporting date.”

The report goes on to note that “management determined there is substantial doubt about the company’s ability to continue as a going concern within one year after the date that the financial statements are issued.”

AmBase is currently suing to undo the foreclosure, and is separately waging a legal battle against the tower’s developers Michael Stern and Kevin Maloney, claiming it is owed a $136 million payout.

AmBase bought a 59 percent stake in 111 West 57th Street for $56 million in 2013, but later fell out with the developers. Amid the dispute, the property’s mezzanine loan fell out of balance. The most junior lender, Spruce Capital Partners, foreclosed on the property in late August.

AmBase, which has no assets to speak of other than its legal claim at 111 West 57th Street, had $4.3 million in operating expenses last year. The company’s founder Richard Bianco has been funding the firm’s legal expenses through a loan.

In January, the company said it is considering selling its legal claim. The Real Deal broke down the obscure company’s background in its November issue.

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