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Wednesday, February 15, 2012

The “Villa” Monstrosity and Other Misfortunes


The photographs below were taken this morning, in Pretoria-East, on the corner of Delmas Road and De Villebois Mareuil Drive. Although it may appear that this is a massive building construction in progress, it is in actual fact an abandoned monstrosity that has been standing unattended for more than a year. The cranes you see in the pictures haven’t moved one inch for months!

The specific location of this monster structure has a special personal significance for me, as it stands on the ground were I built my first house, established my first garden, and where my kids spent their early years, more than 25 years ago. Back then the suburb was known as Wingate Park Ext.1.

The chap who purchased the house from me, for about R230,000, in 1994, when I was transferred to Durban, scored big-time when developers paid him close to 1.5 million for the piece of land. About 78 houses were demolished in the area to make space for the new development, known as “The Villa”, which was designed to include retail shops, offices and a five-star hotel. It was considered the biggest ever construction of its sort in the southern hemisphere, when construction first started about 3 years ago. (I’m not sure if this is still the case.)

Nevertheless, like countless other major developments in South Africa, the construction on this one also grinded to a halt when funds to the developer, Capicol dried up. About R1.5 billion is now required to complete the building.

Villa Mall - View from the East

Villa Mall - View from North
 
The uncompleted Villa Mall is one of the many capital-growth ventures of Sharemax, a property syndication company many of my close acquaintances and family have invested shares in. Lately, there’s been a lot of talk about the two top managers of Sharemax, who apparently live luxuriously while thousands of investors have lost most, if not all, of their money.

Although the two managers may be living a life of luxury, the rumours about Sharemax investors losing money is all hogwash. Despite the current miserable  state of the country, with its immeasurable number of poverty stricken people, the rich will always get richer.

Sharemax assets are not paper assets. They are fixed property! This should, under normal circumstances, be the saving grace for everyone who invested in Sharemax. The fact that they are now under Reserve Bank management enhances their profit potential. Dividends will no longer be paid monthly, but instead yearly or quarterly as with any company that operates within the Companies Act. Whether shareholders should sell their shares, or not, is advice I’d prefer not to give, as I’m nowhere near qualified to do so.

While we’re on the subject of failed constructions, here are two more pics of another complex in Pretoria-East that has apparently also seen its backside due to a lack of funding. The complex is near the upmarket Woodhill Country estate. The pics were taken on the same stretch of road in which “The Villa” is also situated.


7 comments :

Anonymous said... .....Click here to refresh this blog

It seems like 'Min Dae'for Willie Botha....
None of these Properties have been transferred into the investors names.
We did not invest in Sharemax,but through them into property syndications whereby we own nothing.
They last paid interest to us Sepember 2010.
Sharemax is technically insolvent.
:Elke hond kry sy dag :

Pretoria’s controversial celebrity lawyer, Peet Viljoen, due for trial next week in the R100m land scam involving prime property owned by the city of Johannesburg, allegedly approached a former associate of the fugitive Czech billionaire, Radovan Krejcir, for assistance in finding somebody to kill two prominent businessmen on his behalf.

“Peet asked me who could ‘take care’ of Zunaid Moti and Willie Botha,” Jerome Safi told The New Age this week. Soon after the meeting with Viljoen that took place in Bedfordview a month ago, Safi made a statement containing these allegations to the investigating officer, Capt Jan Judeel.

This was confirmed by police spokesperson Lt-Col Lungelo Dlamini, who said the statement had been handed to the prosecutor in the case for a decision.

Safi, a former confidante of Krejcir, was taken in for questioning by the police soon after the German supercar mogul Uwe Gemballa was abducted from OR Tambo airport in January 2010 on arrival.

The two men Viljoen allegedly wanted to be “taken care of”, according to Safi, are Willie Botha, former MD of Sharemax, and 37-year-old car-loving businessman Zunaid Moti, who was implicated in the alleged fraudulent land deal that he (Viljoen) is due to face in court with several other accused.

Details of the alleged assassination plots surfaced on Wednesday when word got around in the Gauteng underworld that Viljoen was allegedly spreading rumours in an effort to create tension between Krejcir and Safi.

“He (Viljoen) is jeopardising people’s lives,” Safi’s uncle, Dave Safi, told The New Age. Dave Safi said discussions between him and Krejcir defused the bad blood created by Viljoen’s rumour mongering in time and cleared the air.

Approached for comment, Krejcir confirmed that he had five meetings with Viljoen recently regarding business proposals. His last meeting with Viljoen was on Wednesday morning.

However, Krejcir says there is more to the story: “Peet told me earlier that Jerome said to him he has to kill me,” Krejcir said. Viljoen said when he asked Safi why he wanted Krejcir dead, he replied: “If I don’t kill Radovan, he will kill me.”

According to Jerome Safi, he met Viljoen some time ago when he was approached with possible business deals. “Peet brought me numerous illegal deals involving municipal properties,” says Krejcir.

It was during one of those meetings that Viljoen allegedly wanted to know from him how he could upset Krejcir enough to have Moti killed. “He was hoping that Moti’s death would mean his problems with his court case would go away.”

Krejcir confirmed that Viljoen approached him for the first time a month ago, with claims that Moti told him they were partners importing cars into the country and abusing his name to create business for him.

“He wanted to make me angry with Zunaid,” Krejcir said.

He then insisted Viljoen take a polygraph test to find out if he was lying. “I am waiting for the final results,” Krejcir said.

dewetp@thenewage.co.za

Anonymous said... .....Click here to refresh this blog

I invested R150.000.00 in Sharemax "The Villa*; 10.06.2010; since I invested i received 2 months interest; I worked through a broker in Nelspruit to invest the money Mr Speedy Pretorius Office: (013) 741 3239
Fax: 086 275 7945 / (013) 741 3239
Cell: 082 455 3381

A meeting was held 21st Nov 2011 where they stated that we will receive doc's via registered post to complete and return before 5th December; to date we have not received any doc's; from what I can understand is that we need to vote or else the Villa will be liquidated

All I want is my money back... and the interest they owe me.....

I am 24 years old and inherit the money after my dad died; I have a job and earn R4500.00 per month; after I invested the money I relied upon the interest money that would be paid out monthy;

I need help to get my money back

Thank you Bonita Lombard

Anonymous said... .....Click here to refresh this blog

Sharemax faces probe for Banks Act breach
June 21 2012 at 05:00am
By Roy Cokayne

THE REGISTRAR of banks has finally lodged a criminal complaint against Sharemax Investments, and the 33 property syndication companies it promoted, for alleged contraventions of the Banks Act.

About 40 000 shareholders invested R4.5 billion through Sharemax’s various property syndications.

The alleged contraventions are being investigated by the Serious Economic Offences Unit at the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigations, the Hawks.

Anyone found guilty of contraventions of the Banks Act is liable to a fine or imprisonment for a maximum period of 10 years or to both a fine and imprisonment.

Michael Blackbeard, the deputy registrar of banks at the Reserve Bank, confirmed this week that the statutory managers appointed to the Sharemax group of companies had, after being requested to do so, informed the Serious Economic Offences Unit of the SAPS that they were satisfied that Sharemax’s funding models contravened the Banks Act.

Blackbeard stressed that this was an administrative finding by the registrar’s office and “not a finding on criminality on the part of the persons involved in the scheme”.

“Criminal investigations and prosecutions are an area of responsibility of the SAPS and National Prosecuting Authority and it is for them to decide how to proceed,” he said.

Dominique Haese, the former financial director of Sharemax Investments and a director of many of the group companies, failed to comment.

The registrar of banks concluded in 2010 that Sharemax’s funding models contravened the Banks Act.

This resulted in the office appointing statutory managers to the Sharemax group of companies and its various property syndications in September 2010 to manage the repayment of funds illegally obtained from the public.

Business Report asked Blackbeard last year why criminal charges for contraventions of the Banks Act had not yet been lodged against Sharemax.

He said the main concern of the office was for the various Sharemax-related companies to resolve their concerns and to give effect to the office’s directive to repay investors’ funds.

He said the office’s mandate was very limited and focused on contraventions of the Banks Act but it would “in due course” instruct the managers to lay a charge with the SAPS.

Blackbeard added that the office was aware the SAPS was already investigating some of the “members” who had been involved in Sharemax schemes and it would provide the necessary assistance to the police and prosecuting authorities.

He previously confirmed that the registrar’s office had been challenged by Sharemax’s lawyers, which culminated in legal arguments relating to the proper interpretation of certain legal prescriptions.

Sharemax ceased making monthly payments to investors at the end of August 2010 when new investor funds dried up.

While under statutory management, the directors of Sharemax proposed a scheme of arrangement and offer of compromise to investors.

These schemes were sanctioned by the North Gauteng High Court in January, leading to the lifting of the statutory management directive.

Anonymous said... .....Click here to refresh this blog

Sharemax faces probe for Banks Act breach
June 21 2012 at 05:00am
By Roy Cokayne

THE REGISTRAR of banks has finally lodged a criminal complaint against Sharemax Investments, and the 33 property syndication companies it promoted, for alleged contraventions of the Banks Act.

About 40 000 shareholders invested R4.5 billion through Sharemax’s various property syndications.

The alleged contraventions are being investigated by the Serious Economic Offences Unit at the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigations, the Hawks.

Anyone found guilty of contraventions of the Banks Act is liable to a fine or imprisonment for a maximum period of 10 years or to both a fine and imprisonment.

Michael Blackbeard, the deputy registrar of banks at the Reserve Bank, confirmed this week that the statutory managers appointed to the Sharemax group of companies had, after being requested to do so, informed the Serious Economic Offences Unit of the SAPS that they were satisfied that Sharemax’s funding models contravened the Banks Act.

Blackbeard stressed that this was an administrative finding by the registrar’s office and “not a finding on criminality on the part of the persons involved in the scheme”.

“Criminal investigations and prosecutions are an area of responsibility of the SAPS and National Prosecuting Authority and it is for them to decide how to proceed,” he said.

Dominique Haese, the former financial director of Sharemax Investments and a director of many of the group companies, failed to comment.

The registrar of banks concluded in 2010 that Sharemax’s funding models contravened the Banks Act.

This resulted in the office appointing statutory managers to the Sharemax group of companies and its various property syndications in September 2010 to manage the repayment of funds illegally obtained from the public.

Business Report asked Blackbeard last year why criminal charges for contraventions of the Banks Act had not yet been lodged against Sharemax.

He said the main concern of the office was for the various Sharemax-related companies to resolve their concerns and to give effect to the office’s directive to repay investors’ funds.

He said the office’s mandate was very limited and focused on contraventions of the Banks Act but it would “in due course” instruct the managers to lay a charge with the SAPS.

Blackbeard added that the office was aware the SAPS was already investigating some of the “members” who had been involved in Sharemax schemes and it would provide the necessary assistance to the police and prosecuting authorities.

He previously confirmed that the registrar’s office had been challenged by Sharemax’s lawyers, which culminated in legal arguments relating to the proper interpretation of certain legal prescriptions.

Sharemax ceased making monthly payments to investors at the end of August 2010 when new investor funds dried up.

While under statutory management, the directors of Sharemax proposed a scheme of arrangement and offer of compromise to investors.

These schemes were sanctioned by the North Gauteng High Court in January, leading to the lifting of the statutory management directive.

Anonymous said... .....Click here to refresh this blog

Hi there. I invested in sharemax in 2009 and also receive my rent for a few months. I think that all the big bosses of sharemax must be put in jail and all there luxurious homes, cars, boats and plots must be sold, so that we can get our money back. To do fraud is a criminalaffence.

KhearP said... .....Click here to refresh this blog

Whoa, hope things will fall in its proper places regarding this villa misfortunes.

Tia Mysoa said... .....Click here to refresh this blog

Sourced from Sunday's Rapport Newspaper, dated 6 Jan 2013:

Gebou bly dalk langer dolleeg

’n Multimiljoenrand-winkelsentrum in Pretoria wat die “Kroonjuweel van Tshwane” gedoop is, staan al langer as twee jaar halfgebou soos ’n spooksentrum.

Die ontwikkelaars se geld het opgedroog nadat beleggingsgeld van die omstrede Sharemax Investments in die projek belê is.

Die bouprojek in Moreletapark en Wingatepark is twee jaar gelede gestaak nadat die boumaatskappy halt geroep het toe die bouer, Capicol, se geld opgedroog het.

Die inwoners sê die gebou staan soos ’n seer oog uit.

Paul Kyriacou, direkteur van ­Capicol, het aan City Press, susterskoerant van Rapport, gesê dit is onseker of die bouwerk vanjaar hervat gaan word omdat hulle steeds op soek is na direkteure wat ’n geraamde R1,5 miljard in die winkelsentrum sal belê.

“Alles is nog net soos toe ons met die bouwerk opgehou het. Niks het nog verander nie,” het hy gesê.

Sharemax Investments het miljoene rande van beleggers verloor toe die geld in Desember 2010 opgeraak het.

Die winkelsentrum was veronderstel om in Augustus 2011 oop te maak, teen ’n geraamde koste van R3,5 miljard, met 300 winkels.

Dit sou ook ’n R65 miljoen-verbetering van die Delmasweg-en-De Villebois Mareuilrylaan-kruising ingesluit het om verkeer te verlig.

Daar is reeds in 2008 begin om verhuringkontrakte vir eenhede in die sentrum te sluit.

Die Italiaanse modehuis Ermenegildo Zegna het beplan om sy eerste Suid-Afrikaanse tak in dié sentrum oop te maak.

Dit het egter op niks uitgeloop nie.

Altesame 78 huise is gesloop om plek te maak vir die ontwikkeling.

’n Vyfsterhotel sou deel uitmaak van die kompleks 130 000 m².

http://www.rapport.co.za/Suid-Afrika/Nuus/Gebou-bly-dalk-langer-dolleeg-20130105

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