Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Could Bold Call by Leslau Be a Tad Too Early?

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

Could Bold Call by Leslau Be a Tad Too Early?

Article excerpt

NICK Leslau called the top of the market two years early, in 2005. Has he been a bit previous in calling the bottom? That is the question jealous rivals will be asking after reading this week's news that the 49-year-old entrepreneur plans to raise [pounds sterling]200 million on the stock market and then spend that -- plus [pounds sterling]400 million of borrowed money -- buying mainly subprime property.

Max Property is to be floated on the Alternative Investment Market on 27 May. Leslau will spend [pounds sterling]20 million on shares in the new company.

An American hedge fund with the peculiar name of Och-Ziff is investing [pounds sterling]35 million. The rest of the shares are there for anyone with the nerve to back the well-liked co-owner of Saracens rugby club.

Leslau's existing property company, Prestbury, will do pretty well out of the deal. First of all, there is the [pounds sterling]625,000-a-quarter management charge for running Max Property over the seven-and-a-half year life of the business -- nearly [pounds sterling]19 million. …

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