Friday, 16 May 2014

The dealmaker, the bank and the missing skyscraper

I'm not a huge fan of Canary Wharf (I used to work there when I first started on the The Daily Telegraph) but I have just stumbled across a rather interesting tale about the financial district and one of the banks based there.

Some Betaville readers might remember that back in November last year it emerged with great fanfare that an Irish property developer was planning to build £1 billion, 74-storey residential skyscraper - to be called called Hertsmere House - on a £100 million site in Canary Wharf. Here is a link to a story in the Financial Times about the scheme: http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/122d3106-4d3e-11e3-9f40-00144feabdc0.html#axzz31i4U0YR1

However, the development and its mystery Irish backer were met with some scepticism in property circles. The Guardian subsequently published a rather good investigative piece on the topic. Here is a link to The Guardian article: http://www.theguardian.com/business/2013/nov/22/tom-ryan-europes-tallest-residential-tower

And then in March a Chinese company, called Greenland, bought the Hertsmere House project after the deal led by the mystery Irish investor group fell apart.

Now, I have been told by City sources that Hans-Olav Eldring was a Credit Suisse high-net-worth private banker who put some of the Hertsmere House deal together for the mystery Irish investor.

When I called Credit Suisse to speak to Mr Eldring to give him the opportunity to comment, the bank's receptionist said he was "out of office".  Mr Eldring, though, is listed on the Financial Conduct Authority's register as "inactive".

Here are the links: https://www.fsa.gov.uk/register/indivBasicDetails.do?sid=726305 and https://www.fsa.gov.uk/register/indivHistory.do;jsessionid=2c098d0b7fd1405b92c4dde4ffcde938.s6fNml1Ka34InBbv-ArJrwTPoNCNa30Ocybtah0IaNuIahiIb3yIaNfwmxiInxiOahmLc3aTc2SHc30Ka2aToi5hch0Na2TSn7bvq70KagTAqQ4InQXQ-BjF8NaPbNeTawbMnkrDqRfzqwbMnkrDqRfzqwbynknvrkLOlQzNp65In0__?sid=726305.

So not sure what has happened there.

This news comes as some investors who poured money into the original Hertsmere House development project look to get their money back, possibly by taking legal action, according to my sources.

A Credit Suisse spokesperson said: "We can't talk about employees and alleged litigation". I have also attempted to contact Mr Eldring via Facebook to give him the opportunity to comment but so far I have not heard back from him.

Watching...

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