Thames Bank Property is taking legal action against two subsidiaries of Tristan Capital Partners’s European Property Investors Special Opportunities 4 (EPISO 4) fund in respect of £750,000 (€860,000) of what it claims to be “unpaid debt” relating to the redevelopment of a former department store in the UK.

Tristan Capital has rebutted the claim. In a statement, the fund manager said: “We consider the claims to be entirely without merit. It would not be appropriate for us to comment further at this time.”

In 2017, Tristan Capital announced that EPISO 4 was investing £50m in partnership with Thames Bank to redevelop the Derrys department store in Plymouth into a mixed-use property.

Thames Bank said it originated the development in 2016 and paid a £750,000 deposit at its own risk on exchange of the land contract. The company said it then took the opportunity to Tristan Capital with a view to procuring development funding and completing the development.

In a statement, Thames Bank said that, as part of the joint venture deal struck with Tristan, “it was agreed that the deposit amount would be left as a debt to be repaid on demand to Thames Bank by one of the Tristan fund subsidiaries, TB Property Sarl”. 

The UK-based property investor and developer added: “This arrangement is even acknowledged and reflected in TB Property Sarl’s own filed statutory accounts. The joint venture has come to an end and Thames Bank has naturally asked for repayment.”

The Derrys building has been transformed into mixed-use development with 500 student beds, a 110-bedroom Premier Inn hotel and around 75,000sqft of retail and leisure space.

Hotel chain Premier Inn agreed a 25-year lease for accommodation on the building’s upper floors, while Homes for Students signed a long-term agreement to operate the accommodation block.

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