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Successful Sale of Northville Psychiatric Hospital Property
424 Acres of Land for Redevelopment, Wayne County, Michigan
Terri L. Fitzpatrick
Real Estate Director
 
Dear Louis:

On behalf of the Department of Management and Budget, State of Michigan, I want to take this time to personally thank you, as the Project Oversight Director, for your extraordinary efforts in the auction and sale of the Northville property. As you are aware, there were four failed attempts to sell this property prior to the successful completion of this transaction.

This was the largest auction assignment ever in the State of Michigan, aggravated by a complicated property, politics and history. However, from the beginning, it was clear that you had a grasp of this major undertaking as well as the high profile nature of the sale process.

The sale generated $30+ million in revenue for the State of Michigan, returned non-productive surplus state property to the tax rolls, and relieved the State of $500,000 per year in annual maintenance and security costs. Redevelopment plans for this site include commercial, office and residential use, infusing an $800 million investment and the creation of 8,500 construction and permanent jobs into Michigan’s economy.

Although there were many hurdles throughout the process, you and your team, including your project manager Doug Dennison and team members David Gilmore, John Johnson, Maul McInnis, Robert Pliska, and others, were consummate professionals. On a personal basis, we very much appreciated your humor and genuine concern for the State and the outcome of our collective efforts. We commend you for your expertise and your tenacity, and for getting the job done.

It has been a sincere pleasure working with you. Best wishes on future projects.

    Sincerely,
Terri L. Fitzpatrick
Real Estate Director
Department of Management & Budget
     
Bricktown, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma $10,918,000
Richard S. McLain
The Mull Corporation
 

I would like to congratulate you both and offer my family’s sincere appreciation for the successful sale of our Bricktown Square property. We were very pleased with the final sale price of $10,918,000 which exceeded our original reserve.

Your Dual Bid Auction System was very well planned creating the maximum competition for our property. The nationwide marketing campaign generated over 100 prospects from 13 states, 7 sealed bids and 4 auction day bidders. The
combination of Strange’s local contacts and expertise, Gilmore’s marketing and auctioneering, and the public relations from Debbie Anglin and the Sperry Van Ness team resulted in a home run on auction day. The efficiency and professional of your team contributed significantly to the success of the auction.

    Richard S. McLain
The Mull Corporation
     
Las Vegas, NV $14,000,000
James C. Saxton President
Saxton Incorporated
 

Thanks for doing what you said you would do! I came to you with a difficult situation and a very limited time frame with which to market and auction our $14,000,000 retail property. Not only did you and your staff jump in with both feet to meet every deadline to ensure a successful auction but you actually found a buyer before the auction even occurred. The buyer was qualified and assumed an existing mortgage within a two week time period which allowed this property to close three weeks before the scheduled auction date. You can’t ask for better results than that! I was extremely pleased with your knowledge and professionalism. I truly believe that we would not have been successful without your persistence. I have shared our success story with many business associates and I will continue to recommend your services to property owners. I am confident that success will follow you and those that do business with you. My very best regards to both you and your staff.

    James C. Saxton President
Saxton Incorporated
Las Vegas, NV
     
Manheim Estate, New Orleans, $4,535,000…
Wilson A. LaGraize, Jr., CPA
Kushner LaGraize, LLP
 

I would like to take this opportunity to express my sincere appreciation and that of John Phelps Hammond, Liquidator of Manheim Antique Galleries, for all your efforts in connection with auctioning the real estate located at 401 Royal Street. Your professional approach to handling these auctions as well as your auctioneering expertise helped us to achieve a substantial value for the owners. Because of your assistance we were able to complete this liquidation without unnecessary problems in an effective and efficient manner.

    Wilson A. LaGraize, Jr., CPA
Kushner LaGraize, LLP
     
184 Inner City Apartments, Miami , Florida
Mona Sullivan
Citibank, N.A
 

On behalf of Citibank, N.A. and the other four Participating Banks, thank you for the excellent Auction you conducted recently. The sale of 184 apartment units in the inner city of Miami was a challenge to all involved. You had to contend with security problems, LIHTC issues, property management changes and communication with five different financial institutions. The price of $1,815,000 you received at Auction was acceptable to all – a feat in itself!

     
Resolution Trust Corp.
Brady W. Ratchford, III
Asset Marketing Specialist
REO Resolution Trust Corp
 

I want to take this opportunity to express my pleasure with the results that you and your team obtained in the recent series of auctions. Having only experienced “ballroom” type auctions previously, I was somewhat apprehensive about the “caravan” concept. However, your results have totally dispelled my doubts. Your team was completely prepared for the event. Your advertising, telemarketing, and broker outreach campaigns resulted in outstanding attendance at each site. The auction team did a wonderful job of getting opening bids and working the audience to obtain the maximum possible price for each property. Your results exceeded our pre-auction estimates by more than 25%. Thank you for a job well done. Best wishes to you and your company in your future endeavors. I hope we have an opportunity to work together again in the near future.

    Brady W. Ratchford, III
Asset Marketing Specialist
REO Resolution Trust Corp.
     
Miami Arena, Downtown Miami, Florida.
Manuel A. Diaz
Mayor of Miami, Florida
 

I wanted to express our gratitude and offer congratulations to you for the successful Auction of the Miami Arena.

The presale marketing plan you implemented targeted prospective National and International buyer groups which resulted in a final sale price over $28,010,000.00 exceeding our minimum bid by $3,000,000.00 and the appraised value by $6,000,000.00.

Your efforts throughout and knowledge of marketing and selling major commercial properties was outstanding and certainly provided value added to the entire sales process and success of the event.

It was a pleasure to work with you and all of your professional team members with a challenging initiative and most rewarding experience.

    Manuel A. Diaz
Mayor of Miami, Florida
     
150 bank owned properties sold
Mike J. Paternostro
Vice President, Regions Bank
 

Being our first auction experience, we were hesitant, however, the Gilmore team handled all aspects of the auction with professionalism. Their marketing expertise produced sales that exceeded our expectations.

    Mike J. Paternostro
Vice President
Regions Bank
     
30 Properties, Atlanta, Georgia.
Joseph C. Wright
First Georgia Savings Bank
 

On behalf of First Georgia Savings Bank, I want to let you know how much we appreciate your help in selling our properties in Hopewell Plantation. Of the 30 total properties which we foreclosed in Hopewell Plantation, you helped in selling 28, including the large house which was the auction site. You and your auction team were able to attract over 500 people to the auction, with over 70 registered bidders. Through your efforts we were able to sell our 28 properties at no loss to First Georgia. In fact, we recovered all principal and interest, in aggregate, and almost all other costs of foreclosure associated with those properties. Please feel free to use us as a reference. We will most certainly use your services in the future, as our needs may dictate.

    Joseph C. Wright
Vice President
First Georgia Savings Bank
     
New Orleans French Quarter, $2,095,500 .
Odom B. Heebe, Jr.
Whitney Investments & Trust
 

We could not be happier with the results of the auction of the St Louis Street properties. The sales prices we were able to attain through the professionalism and marketing expertise of your auction team exceeded the combined appraised value of the properties by over 25%.

We would certainly recommend your services to others and hope to work with you again in the future.

    Odom B. Heebe, Jr.
Whitney Investments & Trust
     
Estate of Governor James A. Noe, $3,692,950
Mr. Edward B. Poitevent, II
Phelps Dunbar, LLP
 

The efficiency with which you conducted the auctions and your professional attitude and handling of the matters contributed significantly to the results and the outstanding successes that were achieved.

    Mr. Edward B. Poitevent, II
Phelps Dunbar, LLP
     
Cedar Knoll Galleria, Ashland, Kentucky $5,090,000…
Gary P. Andrews
GE Asset Management
 

Dear Louis and Joe,

I wanted to congratulate you both and convey our sincere appreciation for the highly successful Sealed Bid Sale you conducted on our behalf with the Cedar Knoll Galleria in Ashland, Kentucky.

The Accelerated Marketing Approach you orchestrated from the very beginning was clearly well planned and created the maximum competition for the property. The results were most admirable, as you generated over 240 inquiries from 23 States and Canada, 22 Broker Registrations, 31 Property Information Packages sold, 6 Bidders from 4 states and final sale price of $5,090,000 representing $3,000,000 more than the established reserve/minimum.

Additionally, the extensive Property Information Packages you prepared, Sealed Bid Forms, Progress Reports, training of Subcontractors, Final Sealed Bid Summary, and overall coordination were extremely professional, effective and allowed for an efficient monitoring of the entire process.

    Gary P. Andrews
GE Asset Management
Investment Manager Real Estate
     
Warehouse District, New Orleans, $1,061,700 ...
Arthur Pulitzer
SODI Development
 

Just had to take this time to drop a note and thank you and your entire organization and staff for such a wonderful job well done! I think the final results from yesterday reflect three of the four parcels selling for more than the listed sales price to the open market before we decided to go to auction!

    Arthur Pulitzer
SODI Development
     
Clairmont Terrace Condos
Roy T. Summers
President, The Summers Company
 

Today is an exciting day for us at Clairmont Terrace Investments, LLC. I have just returned from the attorney’s office, where we closed the final sale from the auction of Clairmont Terrace Condominiums, I am pleased to inform you that the remaining 28 condominium homes that were sold at auction are signed, sealed, and most importantly closed! We can now move forward and look at other opportunities. As you well know, I had great misgivings about conducting an auction in the first place—my previous experience many years ago was not favorable. And when your company made your presentation, stating that we should sell the first 6 units “absolute”, I really began to wonder if we were doing the right thing. But, last week when we turned over the homeowner’s association to the newly elected board, I knew we had made the right decision. From beginning to end, I have been impressed with the professionalism and persistence of your auction company.

    Roy T. Summers
President
The Summers Company
     
Condominium Disposition.
Michael L. Ely
MDC Development Co., Alpharetta, GA
 

The auction on October 14 was a success. We achieved what we targeted in net proceeds, which was in line with your pre-auction estimate. Once we calculated the marketing and carrying costs associated with our expected sell-out (at least one year which would have been required to sell 31 units), our decision to auction was confirmed. The sealed bid approach for the 4 penthouse units was creative and also yielded proceeds that we are happy with, especially with the extreme uncertainty associated with homes in that price range today. The entire production was very professional, and the turnout on auction night was certainly large enough to ensure that we sold each home for its true value. The pre-auction traffic through the development was more than we had experienced in the preceding 12 months. I have to admit that we were very nervous about offering several units “absolute”, but your auction made me a believer! You delivered what you promised with a very efficient program.

    Michael L. Ely
MDC Development Co.
Alpharetta, GA
     
Chestnut Properties
Sidney Pulitzer
Chestnut Properties, LLCt
 

I would like to take this opportunity to express my appreciation for all of your efforts in selling the Wembley Building at auction. The total contract price of $2,860,000 surpassed my expectations in the uncertain post-Katrina market.

I was very pleased that you and your staff kept me constantly apprised of all developments during the pre-auction marketing campaign. Your team conducted the auction in a professional, efficient manner and generated a high level of excitement in order to produce a very successful sale.

I enjoyed working with you and will recommend your services to my business associates. Thank you again for an outstanding job.

    Sidney Pulitzer
Chestnut Properties, LLC
     
Williamsburg Candle Factory $10,833,000
John B. Barnett, Jr., President
Barnett Development Company, Inc.
 

Dear Louis and Jim,

I want to convey my sincere appreciation for the successful Sealed Bid Auction you conducted on my mixed use redevelopment property formerly known as the Williamsburg Candle and Soap Factory.

As you both know, the property was expanded and operated by me and my family for several decades and served as a cornerstone for thousands in this region. However, with the decline in business after 9/11 and other extenuating circumstances, we shut down all operations and decided to sell. It was important to me that the sale not be a long-drawn out process. I am very impressed with how the structured auction encouraged potential buyers to engage in the process and produce a rapid conclusion.

You both were very knowledgeable, professional, and maximized the value through your business model resulting in a sale and closing for $10,833,000.

    Barnett Development Company, Inc.
John B. Barnett, Jr.
President