Thursday, January 26, 2012
Sharemax collapse ‘will hurt economy’
Exposing a murky world
Issue #108, 1st October 2008 Noseweek Publication
Deon Basson's book was subject to a court application to suppress various chapters.(RIP Deon Basson)
Sharemax collapse ‘will hurt economy’
January 26 2012 at 05:00am
By Roy Cokayne
THE COLLAPSE of the Sharemax group of companies and the subsequent scheme of arrangement and offer of compromise to creditors and shareholders is set to have a massive knock-on effect on the economy.
André Prakke, a chartered accountant who has investigated the affairs and schemes promoted by Sharemax over many years, is adamant that investors in Sharemax’s various schemes will not get any further money out of them despite the sanctioning of the scheme of arrangement by the North Gauteng High Court on Friday.
“That money is gone. The construction companies are still owed millions. That money will have to come from somewhere. This tragedy will unfold by the end of this year,” he said.
Brenthurst Wealth Management director and financial advisor Magnus Heystek echoed Prakke’s views, saying individual investors still stood to lose a great deal of money despite the approval of the scheme of arrangement.
Heystek said an independent investigation of the scheme of arrangement had estimated that investors would only get back 10c in each rand that they had invested.
However, Heystek said if investors felt their financial brokers had let them down, they could take the brokers to the Financial Advisory and Intermediary Services Ombud. They could claim back up to R800 000 of their invested capital if the advice they received was shown to be inappropriate.
Prakke said the knock-on effect on the economy of investors losing their money was enormous because the estimated 30 000 investors translated into about 60 000 dependants, most of them pensioners who were reliant on income from these schemes.
This meant the state would have to look after their pensions and medical care, he said.
“The worst is that the people who caused this will never have to answer (for their actions) as things are happening now. There is serious corruption behind this. Where the corruption is I don’t know but it will come out in the next five years,” he said.
Prakke stressed investors in Sharemax had no certainty of outcome because the scheme of arrangement was based on the premise that funding would be obtained to get the scheme off the ground and to complete The Villa and Zambezi Retail Park.
But Prakke questioned what would happen if funding could not be obtained.
He said Sharemax’s entire operations and planning and preparations for the scheme of arrangement had in recent times been funded by diverting money from income-producing property syndications in the group, with the approval of the statutory managers appointed by the Reserve Bank, but without the knowledge of investors in these specific schemes.
This was both irregular and illegal in terms of both the old and new Companies Act without first obtaining the authority and approval of shareholders from these specific income-producing schemes at special meetings.
The analysis in the schedules to the scheme of arrangement revealed this diversion had so far cost between R12 million and R13m, which had been provided for over a long period of time by diverting funds from income-producing schemes, but a further R9m still had to be paid, Prakke added.
Pierre Hough, a strategist and economic crime investigator, said the provisions of the Companies Act could not be used to fix the contraventions by Sharemax of the Banks Act.
Hough said an investigation by the registrar of banks found the issuing of shares and linked debentures was a contravention of the Banks Act and none of the shareholders and creditors therefore became lawful shareholders in terms of the Companies Act.
( Pretoria News )
In addition, Hough said the properties that were being syndicated were not transferred to the syndication vehicle at the time the shares and linked debentures were issued, which meant there was nothing underpinning the share issue.
Hough said the scheme of arrangement meant shareholders were compromising themselves and would lose their money while the people who caused the mess could “just walk away”.
He questioned whether the statutory managers appointed by the Reserve Bank had complied with their responsibilities because they “had failed to take possession and control of the assets of Sharemax”. page 18
Related article going back to 2010..........
Sharemax attorneys form new company
December 13 2010 at 06:01am
By Roy Cokayne
Sharemax Investments’ attorneys Weavind & Weavind, a 105-year-old firm that faces possible liquidation over its alleged illegal release of funds deposited into its trust account by investors in two Sharemax syndications, has registered a new corporate entity.
Companies and Intellectual Property Registration Office records show that W and W Associates was registered by Doreza van Wyk, an associate attorney at Weavind & Weavind, on November 10.
The new firm lists the same physical address and auditors as Weavind & Weavind but the physical address differs from that on Weavind & Weavind’s website. The business start-up date was November 10.
Jaco Spies, a senior legal official for the disciplinary department of the Law Society for the Northern Provinces, said last week that the society did not have any knowledge of the new registration.
Spies said all new law firms were required to register with the law society, complete certain forms and obtain a fidelity fund certificate.
Raiford Johnson, a senior partner at Weavind & Weavind, confirmed the firm had registered a company by the name of W and W Associates “to meet any future needs in terms of our expansion and/or diversification strategy”.
He said: “At present neither our directors nor any of the lawyers employed by us, including Ms Van Wyk, have any intention of practising in any other capacity than as directors and employees of Weavind & Weavind.”
Kobus Schabort of Schabort Incorporated, an attorney representing 11 investors in two Sharemax syndications, who submitted a letter of demand in October to Weavind & Weavind for the repayment of R1.55m his clients had deposited into its trust account for The Villa and Zambezi Retail Park syndications, declined to comment on the reason for Weavind & Weavind registering a new firm.
“I don’t know why they did it but can make my own inferences,” he said.
The demand submitted to Weavind & Weavind was in terms of section 345 of the Companies Act, which is a precursor to a possible liquidation application.
A government notice on property syndications, issued in 2006, prohibits the withdrawal of funds from a trust account before properties for a proposed syndication have been transferred to the syndication vehicle. Neither Zambezi Retail Park nor The Villa have been transferred to the syndication vehicles. Weavind & Weavind maintains the government prohibition is not applicable to the firm.
Schabort said a decision had not yet been taken on whether an application would be launched for the liquidation of Weavind & Weavind. He said consultations were still taking place with his clients and that a decision would definitely be taken this week.
A R200 000 claim was lodged by a single investor in October with both the law society’s fidelity fund and Attorneys Insurance Indemnity Fund related to the release of funds deposited into Weavind & Weavind’s trust account.
The same investor also opened a fraud case at the Brooklyn police station in Pretoria. The case was subsequently transferred to the commercial crimes unit.
Sharemax defaulted on monthly payments to investors in early September and construction on both Zambezi Retail Park and The Villa ground to a halt at the same time.
The registrar of banks in mid-September appointed statutory managers to manage the repayment of funds after an investigation found that Sharemax’s funding model contravened the Banks Act.
About 40 000 shareholders have invested about R4.5 billion in property syndications promoted and marketed by Sharemax. - Business Report
The luxurious lives of Sharemax bosses
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Johannesburg - This is the luxury life of the two top managers of collapsed property syndication company Sharemax - while thousands of investors have lost most, if not all, of their money.
City Press has traced about R250m of assets owned by trusts and companies of Sharemax’s former managing director, Willie Botha, and his marketing manager, Andre Brand.
Botha and Brand were, for almost a decade, at the helm of Sharemax as about 40 000 people invested an estimated R5bn in the company’s 50 property syndicates.
The Reserve Bank ruled in May last year that Sharemax had contravened the Banks Act and had illegally collected deposits from investors.
City Press can reveal this week that one of Brand’s acquaintances, Wietz Nell, has handed incriminating documents and information to the police’s Hawks unit.
The Hawks would not say whether they have launched an investigation against Botha and Brand.
In the documents, Brand accused Botha in a memorandum of illegally pocketing at least R9m of money intended for investors.
Brand also alleged that Botha had, over a period of four years, pocketed R53m in “commission” from a Sharemax front company. Brand demanded a R24.5m share from Botha.
Botha this week ignored multiple attempts to get comment.
Brand said this week that Nell had obtained the documents dishonestly, but he did not deny their veracity.
Brand said that he had in the meantime cleared his complaint with Botha and that he withdrew any allegations against him. He said he now believed the money was paid legally to Botha.
Tomorrow, a group of Sharemax investors plan to bring an urgent court application to declare Sharemax bankrupt, and to freeze the assets of Botha and Brand.
Among the assets that the investors want frozen is Botha’s luxury yacht, which he keeps in the Egyptian port of Hurghada in the Red Sea.
The Italian-designed Scuba Scene is apparently worth between R120m and R150m, and is wholly owned by the Willem Botha Family Trust.
The boat has its own website and is described as “43 metres of classic nautical beauty and luxury”.
It says the Scuba Scene is a “true marvel of design, technology and style to provide all its passengers with an aesthetically pleasing masterpiece”.
The investors also want to ask the high court to prevent Brand from selling his 3 000 hectare game farm near Thabazimbi in Limpopo.
The game farm, Thaba Motswere, has been valued at R79m, and has giraffe, eland, kudu, gemsbok, cheetah and leopard.
The farm’s lodge alone cost Brand an estimated R20m to build and resembles a five-star hotel with all possible amenities.
Brand is desperate to sell the farm and even considered a price of R21.5m last month.
Botha has an equally luxurious game farm in Marken in Limpopo that is thought to be worth even more as it has the Big Five – elephant, rhino, buffalo, lion and cheetah.
Botha lives in a double-storey villa in the exclusive Silver Lakes Estate in Pretoria. Brand recently signed a contract to sell his mansion in Mooikloof in Pretoria for R15m.
Botha was in August “relieved” of his duties and resigned as director. Brand has also since left the company.
In September, the Reserve Bank put Sharemax under statutory management, ordering Sharemax to repay its investors, but there was no money left to do so.
The documents that City Press obtained shows that after Botha and Brand had left Sharemax, they were still paid R15m commission.
The company that is managing Sharemax on behalf of the Reserve Bank, Frontier Asset Management and Investments, did not respond to queries this week.
A forensic auditor, André Prakke, studied the documents obtained by City Press and concluded that there was evidence of money laundering, theft and fraud.
Prakke says that 80% of the money that was invested in Sharemax is gone.
Prakke has investigated Sharemax for many years and has submitted statements about the company to the high court.
He says that the commission that Brand refers to in his memos to Botha has never been revealed in any of Sharemax’s property portfolios.
- City Press
Read more about:
fraud | sharemax | investing | property
13 December 2011 23:01 Special Report Podcast: Niki Vontas – CEO, Bonatla
Interviewer ProfileAlec Hogg is a writer and broadcaster. He founded Moneyweb and is its editor-in-chief.
Sharemax: Liquidation averted? Niki Vontas - CEO, Bonatla
Niki Vontas cries foul says communication process to shareholders is flawed.
- DOWNLOAD THIS INTERVIEW
ALEC HOGG: It’s Tuesday December 13 2011 and in this Boardroom Talk special podcast, Niki Vontas, chief executive of Bonatla Property, joins us now. Niki, good to have you on the programme, there’s been big developments in the Sharemax saga. From your perspective though, you did propose a rescue scheme and walked away, why? What was the background to that?
NIKI VONTAS: I put together a proposal that was originally accepted by the directors of Sharemax and they circulate it to the constituencies. Unfortunately, if you remember, there were a lot of public debates and public analysis in the Financial Mail or the Finance Week in which I commented and obviously I commented on controversial findings of my due diligence and they invoked this disclosures to the press for canceling the transaction summarily for disclosure of, for a breach of non-disclosure, which I find very funny because the press knew almost as much I knew already.
ALEC HOGG: So, you didn’t really walk away it was more a question of being kicked out.
NIKI VONTAS: I need to tell you I still haven’t walked away, there could be still some surprises but I cannot comment on that yet.
ALEC HOGG: But at the moment shareholders or investors, 35 000 of them, at Sharemax have actually voted in favour of a rescue scheme that’s being decided on right now. You don’t think it’s such a good idea?
NIKI VONTAS: Well, first obviously I wouldn’t like to comment on the process but from the little I’ve seen, if you visit the Sharemax website you’ll see that there’s less than 200 people visiting that website a day, there’s very little visits. What you find generally speaking in this doomed [UNCLEAR] syndication schemes like Bluezone that we salvaged or Sharemax or [UNCLEAR] or Realcor, you’ll find that the investors are generally older investors, generally Afrikaans, they haven’t got an email address, they haven’t got proper communication skills and they really rely on [UNCLEAR] communication to get decisions or information passed onto them. So, what I dispute really is that the process is completely flawed. I don’t believe that proper documentation has been circulated to investors to allow them whether or not they will get the investment of such a long period as [UNCLEAR] ten years and what Magnus Heystek, in fact, commented on the Business Report is absolutely right. It’s a total circus.
ALEC HOGG: It’s a circus you say?
NIKI VONTAS: It’s a total circus…[UNCLEAR] a total circus because if you want to put a proposal to 30 000 or 40 000 people on most probably the biggest failure in physical property in South Africa, you at least make the owner of at least the proper analysis of the merit or the pitfalls, you give feasibilities, you give time value of money, your present value, the returns over such a long period. You give them some form of information to ponder about and you don’t give them such a short time basically. Basically to me it’s a little bit of a hit and run operation that’s basically the way I consider it.
ALEC HOGG: From a business perspective though, can this rescue plan that has been proposed work?
NIKI VONTAS: I don’t think so. You’ll find that the Sharemax [UNCLEAR] is not finished, you’ll find some further applications for liquidations, further litigation. Obviously by now the investors are desperate and therefore they are going to consider anything but I still believe that in property there is always a solution. Sometimes if the difficulties are extreme, like in Sharemax, the solutions are more extreme but I still believe its investors deserve proper information in order to make a proper decision. They should, I think…if you want to talk to shareholders you can work like in the old Company Act, [UNCLEAR] to get special resolutions, you conduct meetings, you’ve got quorums and things like that. I haven’t seen anything of that sort. It looks like a bosberaad and the next day you basically announce a 99.9% approval. Last time I’ve seen that it was 1938 and 1939 in Hitler’s referendum. So, my feeling, you need to apply corporate governance, the new companies act, you need to apply proper process to give the time and information to investors to decide whether or not these solutions be good for them an what applies for them, applies for anybody. If I do that transaction, they should also call special meetings and give information and give analysis and ask the press to comment. This thing is a little bit of an occult operation.
ALEC HOGG: Do you know Connie Myburgh, the lawyer who’s behind this rescue scheme?
NIKI VONTAS: Yes, I’ve heard about him, yes.
ALEC HOGG: I believe our investigation journalist, Julius Cobbett, says that he was one of those who vigorously defended the Garek disaster. Lots of people lost much money there as well. What is his motive in this? Are you saying that his motive perhaps is questionable?
NIKI VONTAS: I believe Mr. Myburgh was involved also, if I remember, with Colin Barnard and the fiasco on the Melrose Arch deal with the mine pension fund in 2004, on which I think the late Ian Fife put some very nice article on them, so there must be a bibliography on the SM available if [UNCLEAR]
ALEC HOGG: So, if the courts are to sanction this, would you then try to go to court to get it reversed?
NIKI VONTAS: No, we’ve got other things pending but I cannot believe a court, looking at the way this process was handled, is going to sanction it. I don’t believe a proper judge is going to sanction a process like that. It’s the biggest failure in property in South Africa with 40 000 or 45 000 victims that are asked to give the money over and most of them, I can guarantee you, will be dead before the last payment because they are generally - the syndication investors in all these schemes – are generally retired people, who unfortunately invested their life savings in a property investment with obviously a property and a financial risk and therefore they lost their investment and now ask to receive the return on the investment through their estates because a lot of them won’t survive that [UNCLEAR], I can tell you that.
Fais Ombud orders Sharemax broker to repay R800 000
Financial advice ombudsman Noluntu Bam delivered her first negative finding against a Sharemax broker last week. Her determination may spark fear among those who sold shares in the property syndication company’s two biggest projects, Zambezi and The Villa. It may also encourage other investors to lay complaints against their brokers.
Sharemax is one of the country’s two largest sellers of property syndication schemes. Investors, many of them elderly, have placed about R4.5bn in its numerous schemes. The Villa and Zambezi together account for R2.5bn of investors’ funds. They are also two of the most troubled schemes.
On Wednesday Bam ordered financial adviser Deeb Risk to repay his client, 72-year-old retiree Elise Barnes, R800 000 she had invested in Zambezi. Barnes actually invested R1.4m in the scheme, but the Ombud’s office is only empowered to adjudicate on losses up to R800 000.
A copy of Bam’s order can be downloaded here.
Risk declined to comment on Bam’s finding. He would only say that he will appeal it.
Some commentators have claimed that a complaint against Sharemax brokers would be premature because it is yet to be determined how much investors stand to lose. Moneyweb has previously argued that this should not prevent investors from laying complaints against their financial advisers, and the Ombud’s ruling confirms this view.
Says Bam in her ruling: “The issue is not whether some monies will be recovered by [Barnes] at some future unknown date. The test is whether the advice, given [Barnes’s] circumstances was appropriate. The advice provided was patently flawed.”
Bam had some harsh words for Risk, who she says meant to sell the Zambezi product to Barnes “whether it made sense or not, whether it was inconsistent with [her] circumstances or not”.
But it is Bam’s comments about the Zambezi scheme in general that should be of more concern to Sharemax brokers.
“Had [Risk] read and understood the prospectus he ought to have appreciated the deficiencies,” says Bam.
She describes how the public company into which investors’ money was placed, had only one asset: a shareholding in a private company, Zambezi Retail. “Herein lies the danger,” Bam explains. “Private companies do not have their affairs being subject to public scrutiny.” Bam also notes that Sharemax ensured that at least three of its own directors will be at Zambezi Retail for five years from the date of registration of the prospectus.
“A provider acting with due skill and in the interest of his client would have asked himself, if the two major players, namely the two private companies, are controlled by the same persons, how is accountability, transparency going to be enforced and how is investor protection going to be ensured?”
Bam found that Risk had, among other things:
Failed to disclose that Sharemax Zambezi was a long-term, illiquid investment. His own documents revealed that Barnes would need her capital in one-three years;
Failed to disclose the risk inherent in the Zambezi scheme;
Failed to disclose the investment’s costs;
Did not recommend a product commensurate with his client’s risk tolerance;
Failed to act with due skill, care and diligence in the interest of his client and the integrity of the financial services industry;
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Die beleggers wat sedert 2007 reeds R765 miljoen gestort het in die Zambezi Mall-ontwikkeling wat Sharemax bevorder het, gaan oor ’n week of twee dokumente oor die voorgestelde artikel 311-skema ontvang. Dan mag hulle treur. Hul beleggings is wat inkomste en die terugbetaling van kapitaal betref, waarskynlik niks werd nie.
Die mooi broodjies wat die nuwe sogenaamde onafhanklike direkteure nou bak, troos net die finansiële adviseurs wat die onskuldige beleggers in die eerste plek in die nikswerd posisie geplaas het. Die beleggers wat R1,55 miljard in The Villa gestort het, kan solank begin saamtjank. Jul belegging kan ook nie gered word nie – nie deur ’n A311 of enigiets anders nie.
Die jongste skrywe – toevallig gedateer 1 April 2011 – aan die beleggers en in die naam van die nuwe direkteure, bevat ’n oppervlakkige uiteensetting van die A311-skema wat binnekort voorgelê gaan word. Die nuus is dat die gebou op erf 5, Derdepoort-wyk, waarop die winkelsentrum Zambezi Mall opgerig is, nie meer aan julle oorgedra gaan word nie. Kortweg: Julle het nie ’n eiendom met die R765 miljoen gekoop nie.
Finweek se krapwerk vertel kortliks die volgende: Op erf 5, Derdepoort, het die ontwikkelaar Capicol ’n winkelsentrum met ’n verhuurbare oppervlakte van ongeveer 30 000 m2 opgerig. Capicol skuld nog sowat R70 miljoen aan die bouer WF Kroon vir werk wat reeds gedoen is. Om sinvolle toegangspaaie na die sentrum te bou, sal nog sowat R10 miljoen kos. Capicol het kortom sowat R100 miljoen nodig om die projek te voltooi.
Om dit te bekom, moet Capicol ’n eerste verband oor die eiendom registreer. Dit kan net gedoen word as die Sharemax-beleggers afstand doen van hul reg op die gebou en toestemming gee dat hul huidige dekkingsverband van R600 miljoen oor die eiendom gekanselleer word.
Maar julle gaan nie met leë hande huis toe nie. Dit is die goeie nuus vir die finansiële adviseurs wat ná die tweede deel van die skema skynbaar ook nie meer aanspreeklik sal wees vir die slegte advies wat hulle aan veral senior burgers gegee het nie.
Capicol gaan oor die volgende 15 jaar R1 miljard aan die beleggers terugbetaal. Dit is 30% meer as die R765 miljoen wat julle belê het. Die terugbetaling oor die volgende 15 jaar geskied soos volg, en nogal maandeliks ook: Julle ontvang vir 15 jaar elke maand 70% van die netto huurinkomste wat Zambezi Mall verdien. Onthou, dit is 70% van die netto huurinkomste, dus nadat voorsiening gemaak is vir rente op die verband van R100 miljoen wat Capicol nog moet bekom. Paul Kyriacou, grootbaas van Capicol, is optimisties dat hy selfs voor die verstryking van die 15 jaar hul volle kapitaal aan die beleggers sal kan terugbetaal.
Jammer, maar ek en my adviseurs is maar siniese ou mans wat nogal daarvan hou om sommetjies te maak om die aansprake te toets wat so maklik gemaak word.
Die verwagting wat geskep word en waaroor beleggers sal moet besin voordat hulle die A311-proses goedkeur, is dat 70% van die netto huurinkomste van 30 000 m2 oor die volgende 15 jaar genoeg sal wees om aan hulle R1 miljard te betaal. Die sommetjie werk nou soos volg. Deel R1 000 miljoen deur 15 jaar en deel die antwoord dan deur 12 maande en weer deur 30 000 m2. Dit gee ’n antwoord van R185. Die antwoord beteken dat 70% van die gemiddelde netto huurinkomste van Zambezi oor die volgende 15 jaar R185/m2 moet wees. Om by die volle vereiste netto huurinkomste uit te kom, deel ons R185 deur 0,70. Dit gee ’n netto huurinkomste van R264/m2. Eienaars van winkelsentrums weet egter dat die netto huurinkomste selde meer is as 70% van die bruto huurinkomste. Om die bruto huurgeld – dit is die maandelikse huurgeld wat huurders betaal – te kry, moet ’n mens die R264/m2 weer deur 0,7 deel. Dit gee vereiste bruto huurgeld van R377/m2 per maand as die sentrum altyd 100% beset is. Dit is nogal ’n taai vereiste.
Voordat julle, beleggers en finansiële adviseurs, te opgewonde raak oor die nuwe wonderwerk, stel Finweek voor dat julle eers die volgende doen: Vra jou finansiële adviseur vir ’n lekker lang besoek aan Zambezi Mall. Dalk gaan van die nuwe direkteure saam … Jy sal vind dat net sowat 80% van die verhuurbare oppervlakte tans beset word deur huurders wat hoegenaamd maandeliks huur kan betaal. Een huurder is Checkers, en wees verseker hy betaal nêrens R377/m2 vir winkelspasie nie.
Vra die direkteure wat die gemiddelde bruto huurinkomste per vierkante meter is wat die genoteerde Growthpoint se toptien winkelsentrums per maand verdien. Vra wat dink hulle moet gebeur om dit vir Zambezi Mall moontlik te maak om meer huurgeld per vierkante meter te verdien as die toptien sentrums. Finweek sal graag die inligting met sy lesers en ander Sharemax-beleggers wil deel.
Lang wagtyd vir Sharemax-beleggers
David van Rooyen
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Sharemax: Beleggers betaal dalk prys
Jan 29 2012 07:51
Johannesburg. – Die vreugdevure behoort te brand, want die Sharemax-sage het ’n oplossing gekry.
Veral die makelaars wat onskuldige beleggers in dié gemors gelei het, vertel daardie beleggers nou dat hulle hul geld gaan terugkry.
Maar gaan hulle?
Ingevolge die reëlingskema met Sharemax se skuldeisers is belowe dat die eiendomme waarin belê is, oor tyd só reggeruk gaan word dat dit óf verkoop sal kan word óf finansiering gekry sal kan word met die eiendom as sekuriteit en dat beleggers dan met dié geld terugbetaal sal word.
Die reëlingskema het immers tyd gekoop om die situasie op te los, want die groot voordeel van só ’n skema is dat dit die gevaar van likwidasie afweer.
In so ’n gemors soos dié waarin Sharemax verkeer, klink likwidasie dalk na ’n vinnige oplossing, maar die eiendomsportefeulje is in so ’n haglike posisie dat dit vir baie min verkoop sal word.
As die likwidateurs en ander skuldeisers hul deel gekry het, gaan baie min vir beleggers oorbly en gaan mense groot verliese ly.
Nou is daar ten minste ’n geleentheid om iets aan die saak te doen, maar oor of beleggers oor vyf of tien jaar al hul geld sal terugkry, is daar twyfel.
Daar is steeds ’n wesenlike moontlikheid dat beleggers verliese gaan ly – al sê die makelaars wát.
Andersins sal hulle bereid moet wees om baie lank te wag voordat die eiendomme genoeg werd sal wees om hul belegging uit te keer.
’n Handelseiendom se waarde word net deur een faktor bepaal: die inkomste wat ’n belegger daaruit verdien. ’n
Gerespekteerde waardeerder wat die Sharemax-portefeulje ken, raam dat kopers ’n opbrengs van minstens 10% sal verlang voordat hulle dit sal oorweeg om van die eiendomme of die portefeulje te koop.
As die bestaande inkomste nie so ’n opbrengskoers moontlik maak nie, moet die prys noodgedwonge daal tot ’n vlak waar die verlengde opbrengskoers weer moontlik is.
’n Ontleding van die verskillende eiendomme se opbrengs dui daarop dat ’n belegger nou dalk net bereid sal wees om een van die eiendomme, 148 Leeupoort, vir die gesindikeerde bedrag te koop. Dié eiendom verdien vir sy beleggers ’n inkomste van 11,86%.
Omdat die inkomste-opbrengs van die meeste eiendomme tussen 1,4% en 4% van die gesindikeerde waarde beloop, gaan beleggers in die meeste gevalle nie meer as 40% van die geld wat hulle belê het, terugkry as die geboue nou verkoop word nie – ás daar kopers is.
Trouens, net vier van die eiendomme in die portefeulje van 22 eiendomme verdien tans ’n opbrengs van meer as 5%, en vier verdien selfs niks nie (Zambezi Retail en The Villa Retail Park in Pretoria ingesluit).
Dit beteken dat meer as 80% van die eiendomme se inkomste binne ’n paar jaar minstens moet verdubbel om opbrengskoerse by die vlak te kry waar kopers sal belang stel.
As toestande in die eiendomsmark verbeter, kan potensiële kopers dalk met kleiner opbrengste tevrede wees, maar selfs al gebeur dit, sal die meeste eiendomme se inkomste met 15% tot 25% per jaar moet toeneem.
’n Paar wonderwerke is dalk hiervoor nodig. Nie een van die 18 skemas wat tans ’n inkomste verdien, se inkomste-opbrengs het verlede jaar gestyg nie. Deur die bank was almal s’n verlede maand laer as in Maart.
Twee van die vernaamste redes hiervoor is stygende leegstaansyfers en al hoe meer huurders wie se huurgeld agterstallig is.
Nie een van die eiendomme kon iets beduidends aan die leegstaansyfer doen nie – trouens, die persentasie het oorwegend gestyg.
Leë ruimte en agterstallige huurgeld is die gevolg van die swak ekonomie en die moontlikheid dat ekonomiese toestande gou dramaties gaan verbeter, lyk nie goed nie.
Die swak ekonomie skep ook ’n ander probleem, naamlik dat dit vir eiendomseienaars bitter moeilik is om huurgeld skerp op te stoot, veral as dit soos in die geval van Sharemax skerp móét styg.
Die bestuurders van verskeie van die eiendomme het trouens laat blyk dat hulle eerder huurgeld verlaag om huurders te lok.
Van die eiendomme se toekoms lyk ook duister weens nog nuwe ontwikkelinge in dieselfde gebied wat huurders en hul klante wegrokkel.
’n Voorbeeld hiervan is die Sharemax-sentrum Liberty Mall in Welkom waar ’n nuwe winkelsentrum in die omgewing daartoe help lei het dat 67% van sy ruimte leegstaan. Beleggers verdien tans geen opbrengs uit dié sentrum nie.
Frontier Asset Management meen die sentrum het steeds potensiaal en wil geld belê om dit vir huurders aantreklik te maak, maar erken terselfdertyd op sy webblad dat die mark vir winkelruimte in Welkom heeltemal oorversadig is.
Nog ’n probleem is dat die beleggers destyds baie meer in die eiendomme belê het as wat dit werd was. Tot 30% van die geld wat beleggers beskikbaar gestel het, is nie gebruik om in eiendom te belê nie, maar het gegaan vir promotorsgeld, koste en die lekker kommissie wat die makelaars gekry het.
Dié geld is nie agterbaks ingesamel nie. Dit is baie duidelik in die prospektus uitgestippel, maar beleggers (of dalk hul slim makelaars) het dit nie gelees of besef wat die implikasie daarvan is nie.
Voordat ’n belegger dus sy geld kan terugkry, moet die waarde van die eiendom nie net herstel tot die vlak waarteen dit gekoop is nie, maar baie meer toeneem om vir die res van die uitgawes te betaal.
Boonop het die reëlingskema gepaardgegaan met groot koste, waarvan die besonderhede getrou aan die nuwe bestuur se styl waarskynlik geheim sal bly.
Daar is miljoene betaal aan skikkings met skuldeisers en astronomiese regskoste, en dié geld kom nie uit die Sharemax-bestuur se sak nie, maar is by die eiendomsmaatskappye geleen en moet waarskynlik uit toekomstige opbrengste vergoed word.
Sake24 sê nie beleggers gaan niks terugkry nie.
Die struktuur is geskep om beleggers oor tyd te betaal en die huidige bestuurders gaan dit waarskynlik probeer doen.
Dit is egter nie reg om valse verwagtinge by beleggers te skep nie. Daar is baie struikelblokke wat kan keer dat die eiendomswaardes genoeg herstel om beleggers se geld binne die beloofde tye terug te gee.
Lees meer oor: sharemax
Charges laid over Sharemax scheme
18 Oct 2010
Sharemax’s attorneys, Weavind & Weavind have apparently been charged with fraud by Pierre Hough, managing director of Chase International who laid the charges at the Brooklyn Police Station on behalf of one of his clients.
According to station commander, Brigadier Andre Wiese, a case of fraud had been opened but this matter had been transferred to the commercial crimes unit in Pretoria.
Hough says Weavind & Weavind failed to respond to a demand for repayment of a R200k deposit originally paid to the attorneys by one of Chase International’s clients. He has apparently lodged a claim with the fidelity fund of the Law Society of the Northern Provinces in an effort to get the client’s money back.
Hough has accused Weavind & Weavind of theft amid allegations of fraudulent non-disclosure and misrepresentation in the prospectus published for the Zambezi Retail Park.
Hough has also accused the attorneys of transferring money out of their trust account prior to the property being transferred to the syndication vehicle. The Department of Trade and Industry specifically prohibits the withdrawal of funds from a trust account prior to the properties being transferred.
Apparently Zambezi Retail Park and The Villa – other properties in the Sharemax portfolio – have not yet been transferred to the syndication company.
Law firm: Summons against Sharemax
14 Jan 2011
Weavind & Weavind, the attorneys acting for Sharemax Investments has launched a R9-million damages claim against Pierre Hough, managing director of Chase International, Chase Consulting, financial planner Toffie Risk and Johanna Margaretha Magdalena Bosman, an investor in Zambezi Retail Park syndication.
The firm is claiming R2-million while its seven directors are each claiming R1-million from Bosman, Hough and Chase Consulting because of damages that they allege were a result of Bosman’s conduct.
In its particulars of claim, Weavind & Weavind list a number of statements alleging that funds deposited into the firm’s trust account had been stolen. The allegations were apparently made in affidavits drafted in support of a complaint to the Law Society of Northern Provinces and a criminal case.
Weavind & Weavind says the allegations are wrongful and defamatory and implied that the directors were implicit in the theft and shared the proceeds. It claims the statements were made with the intention to defame the firm and its directors and injure their reputation.
Hough, who had assisted in compiling the affidavits, said that the damages claim lacked substance and merit and he confirmed that all the respondents named in the Weavind & Weavind application would defend the action.
He said the damages claim was aimed at scaring off other investors in the syndication to prevent them from lodging claims against the law firm.
Jaco Fourie, a senior legal official within the disciplinary department of the Law Society of the Northern Provinces says the organisation is awaiting a response from Hough to the allegations made by Weavind & Weavind. Once it has received the response it will present its evidence to a disciplinary committee of the law society.
A case of fraud was opened against the firm after Sharemax defaulted on monthly payments to investors in September last year. The commercial crimes unit is investigating the case.
Readers' Comments Have a comment about this article? Email us now.
It was the illegal release of the trust funds that started the whole feeding frenzy and made a joke of all the investor safeguards provided for in the Unfair Business Practices Act. Go for them Pierre. You have a lot of support out here - how about us starting a fund to pay a bounty on each one of those involved being put behind bars. - L. Oldacre
Hi, lees News 24 van vandag,kyk in watter weelde leef Botha en Brand,hoe kan hulle met die bedrog wegkom terwyl ek en my vrou, altwee pensionarise, van dag tot dag moet leef op genade,ek kan ook my eiendom verloor,het nie meer n inkomste nie en ons leef op R2,000 n maand.Mense,hoe werk die wet dat skelms ons geld kan vat en daarmee gegkom?Ek wat n leek is weet nie watter kant toe nie,het probeer werk kry maar is te oud,het 10 jaar terug n hartomleining gehad.Het ook nie geld om n saak te maak nie,glo nie dit sou in alle geval gehelp het nie.WAT kan ek doen,groete. - Willem