Swiss publication Bilan has reported that the bankruptcy of Marclay Meadows risks leaving businesses of the region in peril. A criminal investigation is now under way.
It all started when Christian Aouad, the sole manager of C.A. Consulting, now in bankruptcy, launched the Marclay Meadows project, the construction of eight high-end apartments on the heights of Vandœuvres.
C.A. Consulting was then held by Euroasia Investment, a holding company in Geneva owned by Yves Bouvier, who is best known for his alleged involvement in a billion dollar global art fraud.
The latter has invested more than 9 million francs in this project, whose management by Christian Aouad is now being questioned by stakeholders.
For instance, a buyer of two apartments not completed at the last moment will be right in the cash plan for this project, which will collapse after millions had already been spent on the purchase of the land and its construction.
CA Consulting never took out any construction credit, instead relying exclusively on the proceeds from the sale of the lots, even though the real estate market has been showing a sharp decline since the project began in 2013.
The company Headed by Christian Aouad being no longer able to honor its debts, the Dubouchet sanitary warehouse - whose claim amounts to 1 million francs - requested, on March 2, 2016, bankruptcy without prior prosecution of CA Consulting.
Ramelet SA (metallic structures) initiated two lawsuits against the same company, for a total amount of 670,000 francs.
This results in an ineluctable bankruptcy ordered by the Court of First Instance in Geneva on 14 April 2016, when the construction site, which is now shut down, has not been completed and a dozen companies remain unpaid for About 8 million francs.
Of these, the Claudio D’Orlando company, which specializes in the supply and laying of concrete, still has to reach about 2 million francs. The BM Architects office, in charge of the project, holds a receivable of 1.8 million francs. Just like the Mardeco marble factory, which has carried out works for more than 900,000 francs. Without being paid. According to the BM Architects office, the total amount to be paid would be CHF 16.2 million, which includes work already carried out, but unpaid, and work still to be carried out.
However, there are cheaper solutions for completing the project. It should be noted that certain tradespeople and contractors involved - Ramelet, Egg-Tesla, Colorimmo, CGC Energie, Claudio D’Orlando and Dubouchet - have obtained legal mortgages from entrepreneurs, which is not the case for all those involved in this case.
Criminal complaint against Christian Aouad and Yves Bouvier
Yves Bouvier, who is involved through his Geneva holding company, claims he is also a victim. Yet, on June 8, 2016, Pierre Dubouchet SA filed a criminal complaint against Christian Aouad and Yves Bouvier, together with other companies, for the effective reduction of the assets to the detriment of the creditors and management.
Why does he blames the two businessmen? Having bought an apartment in the Marclay Meadows batch prior to the sudden bankruptcy of CA Consulting at a price of 2.6 million francs, while the "catalog" sale price (dating from 2013) was 4.3 Million francs and to have also borne the transfer duties to CA Consulting - 130,000 francs. - contrary to usage. Christian Aouad, on whose behalf Yves Bouvier bought the apartment, would have benefited from a significantly preferential price, saving nearly 1.7.
This is a very tangled case and it is not clear where it will end. One thing is for sure, it is bad news for Yves Bouvier and he may well end up facing a significant punishment.