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Business and Economy

Closing On Saddleback Mountain Purchase Delayed Until 2020

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Courtesy of Saddleback
/
via Bangor Daily News
The sale of Saddleback Mountain, originally scheduled for Dec. 23, has been delayed until January 2020.

The expected sale of Saddleback Mountain, which was expected to close Dec. 23, has been extended until January, the buyers said.“We had focused on closing as soon as our due diligence was complete, but the complexity of the deal didn’t give [the Finance Authority of Maine] enough time to do their work,” Andy Shepard, the new general manager and CEO of the resort, said in an email early Friday morning. “We’re shifting our closing timing to January.”

To buy the resort, Arctaris is using loan guarantees from the Finance Authority of Maine; the New Market Tax Credit program, a federal program that provides an incentive to invest in low-income communities; and the local support from residents, condominium owners and philanthropies.

Jonathan Tower, managing partner of The Arctaris Impact Fund, the Boston investor that is buying the resort, wrote in a statement obtained by the Bangor Daily News and dated Thursday that the fund and the current owners continue to move toward completing the sale as part of a broader plan to reopen the mountain for the 2020-21 ski season.

“The Finance Authority of Maine was scheduled [Dec. 19] to review Saddleback’s request to participate in [its] commercial loan guaranty program in support of this transaction,” he wrote. “Given the complexity of this transaction involving support from both federal and state government partners, FAME requested today that we consider advancing this discussion to their January board meeting.”

He characterized the delay as a brief pause in economic development plans at Saddleback and said Arctaris remains committed to closing the transaction.

He said Arctaris and the current owners, the Berry family, wanted to complete the transaction in December.

“Arctaris remains confident that the purchase will be completed in January and on the same terms as previously agreed,” Tower wrote.

Tower said Arctaris is close to reaching its $2 million fundraising goal for December from philanthropists and condo owners at the resort.

He said Arctaris is now focused on getting the additional $2 million required to complete the New Markets Tax Credit transaction in January.

“This continued support through January remains critical toward reopening Saddleback and securing the federal funding to complete the mountain revitalization plan,” he wrote. “Nothing about this transaction is easy.”

This story appears through a media-sharing agreement with Bangor Daily News.