Great Orlando Wheel Corp., which had planned to build a 400-foot-tall (122 meter) Ferris wheel in central Florida, was placed under the control of a receiver to liquidate its assets, according to court papers.
The company was sued Aug. 2 in Delaware Chancery Court by Great Wheel Beteiligungs GmbH of Berlin, an affiliate of ABN Amro Bank NV, which contends it invested $63 million for shares in the Orlando attraction that was never built.
The receiver, Wil Armstrong, will handle “discharge of all debts and liabilities” and distribute the remainder, less other costs, to shareholders, Chancery Judge J. Travis Laster said in an order yesterday in Wilmington.
The German company contended that Andreas Florian Bollen, chairman of Singapore-based Great Wheel Corp., controls the Florida firm created in 2007 to build the Orlando wheel, according to court filings. Bollen’s company has built giant Ferris wheels in London and Singapore.
The Florida company defaulted on notes it secured as part of the project and has sought to sell the wheel’s 20-acre site for $12 million, lawyers for the German company said in court filings.
Bollen’s Singapore Flyer, which was put into receivership in May, is the world’s largest Ferris wheel and can hold as many as 784 passengers. The wheel takes about 30 minutes to complete a revolution. At 165 meters, it’s 30 meters higher than the English Ferris wheel, known as the London Eye.
Another developer is beginning construction of a 425-foot tall observation wheel in Orlando as part of an entertainment complex known as I-Drive Live, according to the Orlando Sentinel.
The case is Great Wheel Beteiligungs GmbH & Co. KG v. Great Orlando Wheel Corp., CA8768, Delaware Chancery Court (Wilmington).
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