Citibank rescues Randsworth

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The Independent Online
CITIBANK, the US bank, is rescuing Randsworth Trust, the property company, from receivership in a deal under which it is financing the redemption of pounds 135m debenture stock and bidding for some of the group's assets, writes Heather Connon.

Randsworth was acquired on behalf of pension fund clients by JMB Realty of Chicago in 1989. Its parent company, Randsworth Acquisitions, was put into receivership in March, although the subsidiaries continue to trade.

Its main liabilities are pounds 224m lent by Citibank and pounds 135m of debentures secured on the assets of London & Provincial Shop Centres, its main subsidiary, which owns property in London.

London & Provincial's net assets have fallen in the past two years from pounds 101.3m to liabilities of pounds 32.7m. It is unable to pay debenture interest. The directors decided that appointing receivers would further reduce asset values. Citibank is funding the debenture redemption and will bid for some of Randsworth Trust's assets or for the whole company.

Citibank, which is also heavily exposed to Speyhawk, would not comment yesterday.