PRESS: KARA RESCUE PLAN OK’D

A federal bankruptcy judge has approved a reorganization plan for the remaining assets of the former Kara Homes, the Asbury Park Press reports.

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The deal means that work will resume on 11 residential housing developments stalled by Kara’s insolvency last year, the newspaper says.

It also means goodbye for company founder and Rumson resident Zuhdi Karagjozi, who had objected to the plan, under which group that includes Lakewood developer Glen Fishman will take control of the business.

From the Press:

With the plan approved, Plainfield Speciality Holdings II Inc., a Greenwich, Conn.-based hedge fund and Fishman will take control of the company. Kara Homes will be renamed Maplewood Homebuilders.

Now Plainfield will give the company an infusion of $12 million. A revolving loan of up to $30 million will be used to complete construction of 130 homes under contract with potential home buyers.

“We expect this to be easy lifting for us, to be blunt about it,” said Thomas March, executive vice president at Maplewood Homebuilders, which is based in Rahway.

Kara Homes filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on Oct. 5 after a cash crunch and a slowdown of the housing market.

In court today, Perry Mandarino, the chief restructuring officer appointed by Kaplan last November, said Plainfield was the only group willing to provide the company with the funding it needed to emerge from bankruptcy.

“We went to a slew of people,” he said.

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