Western Cape-focused real estate investment company Spear is confident that its investment in the controversial 15 on Orange hotel development, on the fringes of the Cape Town city centre, will pay off handsomely. Readers may remember that 15 on Orange (or 15 on Lemon, as some sour shareholders dubbed the property) enjoyed, or endured, a fairly brief sojourn on the JSE as the sole asset of the Quantum Property Group (QPG). As documented in an FM cover story in September 2011, QPG invested around R400m in 15 on Orange as a part of a development that ending up costing close to R800m. The upmarket hotel got off to a slow start (after opening late) in 2010, and simply never generated the cash flows to service its debt. QPG was suspended on the JSE after banker Absa pushed for liquidation, and its shareholders lost their shirts. At that time the hotel was regarded as a no-hoper, and unlikely to realise much value in wind-up procedures. But in 2013 Blend Property Group emerged as the new ...

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