Even in the heart of the Olympics, a foreclosure

Whistler Blackcomb, site of the Olympics' Alpine ski events, is set for foreclosure auction Feb. 26.

Jonathan Hayward/The Canadian Press/AP/File)
Whistler village (seen here in a 2008 photo) is the ski resort hosting glamorous Alpine events at the Olympics. But the indebted resort is scheduled for a foreclosure auction during the last days of the Olympics.

Smack dab in the middle of the Olympics the wheels of foreclosure were turning at the exclusive Whistler Blackcomb resort, the home of this year’s ski events. However, the resort’s management Intrawest, and its owner, Fortress Investment Group, have been able to delay the actual foreclosure auction until February 26th, still two days prior to the closing ceremony, and still plenty embarrassing.

According to The Globe and Mail:

“Fortress and Intrawest have been in talks with lenders since missing the final payment on a $1.4-billion (U.S.) loan late last year.

“The tension is heightened by the fact that one of the big creditors is the estate of bankruptcy Lehman Bros. Holdings Inc. Given that Lehman is liquidating, the former bank can’t be very generous with time, making it more difficult to find a fix for Fortress and Intrawest.

“The timing of the auction — set for the middle of the Olympics which are being held in part on Intrawest’s Whistler hill — was widely viewed as a pressure tactic and a message to Intrawest and Fortress: Bring us a deal we like, fast.”

Of course, from the above, the crown jewel of this gold medal worthy debacle is the involvement of a currently liquidating Lehman Brothers. You would have thought Fortress would have seen this one coming.

You can read more details on the rapidly unfolding story in The Globe and Mail’s coverage of Intrawest getting more time from bankers.

Speaking of Vancouver… the Agora Financial Investment Symposium will be held in that fine city July 20-23, 2010. It’s been Agora Financial’s most important event every year for over a decade. This year promises to be no different. We’ve already locked in many speakers you won’t want to miss. You can learn more about the event and also register here.

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