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Dinesh Maniar’s big break fell through, but it just might be a good thing.

Maniar owns 96% of the stock of Montgomery Realty Group Inc., a real estate holding company that doesn’t hold much real estate and trades, but not often, on the over-the-counter bulletin board. To boot, he owns 100 percent of Diversified Investment & Management Corp., which handles all of Montgomery’s property management and brokerage activities.

His big break came in May, when Sand Hill Property Company, owned by local developer Peter Pau, signed on to pay Montgomery $14.5 million for a piece of land in South San Francisco already approved for a 200,000-sf office building. With the so-called Eccles Project land on Montgomery’s books for $500,000, Montgomery stood to make a $12 million profit after paying off a $1.9 million mortgage on the property.

This week, along with the company’s quarterly earnings, Montgomery is revealing that the first deal fell through nearly two months ago due to an unaccounted for easement on the property, but that a new deal was being negotiated. Moreover, the company says the outcome should be even better than the first, if not as inexpensive or immediate.

Montgomery execs believe the city of South San Francisco may now approve a 300,000-sf office building on the land, and are negotiating a joint venture wherein Sand Hill Property would buy a partial interest rather than the entire property. The two companies would then convey their respective interests to the joint venture for development, and bear their pro rata share of construction and other costs – estimated at $60 million – as well as any financial return from the successful building, leasing and ultimate sale of the completed project. A final agreement is expected by the end of September.

In the meantime, Maniar’s company, the income-producing property for which ciurrently includes a couple of strip malls and an office building, is running at a deficit. As of June 30, the company had total assets of $10.23 million, and total liabilities of $12.46 million.

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