LAS VEGAS-Led by two Fortune 500 construction companies, a group of subcontractors for the stalled Fontainebleau resort development here issued a joint statement Thursday saying they are cooperating in an effort to get back to work on the multi-billion-dollar project, which is being prepared for sale by a court-appointed examiner. The group includes Fortune 500 companies Tutor Perini Corp., which owns Fontainebleau subcontractor Desert Plumbing & Heating Co.; and MDU Resources Group, owner of Fontainebleau subcontractors Bombard Electric, Bombard Mechanical and Desert Fire Protection.
“We are in discussions with a number of potential partners, including hotel and gaming operators and financial partners,” Ronald Tutor, chairman and CEO of Tutor Perini, says in the statement, which was provided to the Las Vegas Sun . “We are exploring a variety of options that we can propose to the bankruptcy court, including debtor in possession financing.”
John Harp, chief executive of MDU Construction Services Group, reportedly told the paper that the cooperation is in response to concerns that potential investors and gaming partners may have had difficulty expressing interest in the project because there was no formal organization of Fontainebleau subcontractors with which to negotiate.
Las Vegas attorney Gregory Garman of locally-based Gordon Silver, which represents many of the lien holders, reportedly added that the participation of large players like Tutor Perini and MDU means the subcontractor group will be able to provide any would be buyer with timing and price guarantees for the completion of the project. The only buyer to publicly express interest in the project to date is Penn National Gaming, which is working to be the stalking horse bidder for an eventual auction.
Tutor said on a conference call Thursday that it appears the bankruptcy court is moving toward an auction of the project sometime after the first of the year. Harp and MDU could not be reached Friday afternoon for comment.
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