In the frame of an urgent proceeding involving a car dealer, the team with expertise in ailing businesses was instructed in the frame of these proceedings in regard to the removal of the leasehold rights of the business leasing the premises, whose intended use was for the dealership. The judicial custodian was authorized to sell the leaseholds to a large retail store despite opposition by the lessors.
Following a five-year long dispute, initial attempts to reach a conciliation with its car manufacturer and a company rescue arrangement, the distributor was declared bankrupt, which entailed a piece by piece realization of the company’s assets, amongst which the leases.
A lot was at stake financially as the offer for sale of the leaseholds to the large retail store was almost one million euros.
The lessors refused to have the business provided in the leases changed on the grounds that this sale could only be contemplated on the condition that the provisions of the lease were duly performed. They forbid the liquidator to sell the leaseholds.
In light of several lessors’ refusal to authorize the change of business provided in the leaseholds, which was binding on the judicial custodian, the future purchaser was unable to arrange the sale. It was paramount to have the judge pronounce the change of business provided in the leaseholds as soon as possible as the rent continued to run although the company’s cash flow was at an all-time low.
The team drew on specialist expertise which allowed it to:
- have the case heard in an urgent proceeding within 3 months;
- challenge the unfair refusal by the lessors to have the business provided in their leaseholds changed;
- seek authorization for the liquidator to change the business provided in the leaseholds with a view to selling the latter to a large food retail store, whilst duly performing the provisions of the lease.
The authorization granted by the Judge to the judicial custodian enabled a quick sale of the leases via a piece by piece best-price realization of the assets and the means to substantially dissuade creditors.
No form of appeal was lodged against this decision by the lessors.