A White Plains specialty finance company is demanding $1.2 million from a Jersey City, New Jersey developer who allegedly refused to pay a consulting fee on a $395 million loan.
Bridge Funding Inc. accused The Manhattan Building Company Inc., several affiliates and their president Sandy Weiss of breach of contract in a Nov. 14 complaint filed in Westchester Supreme Court.
Weiss and his companies “stonewalled … attempts to resolve this latest dispute in an amicable manner,” the complaint states, “despite their clear and unequivocal obligations.”
Manhattan Building Co. and its lawyer, George L. Garcia, did not respond to emails asking for a response to the allegations.
Bridge Funding was founded in 1997 by Lawrence Linksman of North Salem. It focuses on real estate lending, according to its website, and has access to more than $1 billion.
Weiss founded Manhattan Building in 1994. MBC, as he calls the company, has put more than $1 billion in real estate ventures in Hoboken and Jersey City, its websites states, and has an additional $1 billion in projects under construction or in planning.
The companies struck a consulting deal in 2018, according to court records, whereby Bridge would try to line up lenders and investors for MBC for new and existing projects. Bridge was to be paid $12,500 a month, but after 28 months had received only $112,500 of the $350,000 it was owed.
Bridge sued MBC this past January for the unpaid consulting fees and settled the dispute in March. MBC agreed to pay Bridge $300,000, according to the settlement, plus 0.33% on any new funding it received from Madison Realty Capital, to whom Bridge had introduced MBC.
On Oct 21, the new lawsuit states, Weiss told Linksman that MBC was about to close on a new loan with Madison Realty. Weiss allegedly said his cash position was weak and he asked whether the Madison Realty fee could be spread out over time.
Linksman claims he asked for more information so that he could evaluate the request, but MBC has refused and “purposefully operated under a veil lacking any transparency.”
Then Madison Realty notified Linksman that it had loaned $395 million to MBC.
The loan is for MBC’s 1,089-unit Emerson Lofts project in Jersey City, and includes $168 million previously agreed to.
The consulting fee equals more than $1.3 million, according to the complaint, minus a $62,500 credit, for a total of $1,241,000.
Bridge Funding claims that Weiss and MBC have ignored demands for payment, according to the complaint filed by Manhattan attorney Mark Lichtenstein and Armonk attorney Prassana Mahadeva.
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