Epicentre auction ends with no higher bids against lender

Last June, the owner defaulted on an $85 million loan before the property went into receivership.
The twice-delayed auction for the Epicentre in uptown Charlotte was held Tuesday morning.
Published: Aug. 8, 2022 at 10:48 PM EDT|Updated: Aug. 9, 2022 at 11:17 AM EDT

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - The twice-delayed auction for the Epicentre in uptown Charlotte was held Tuesday morning.

Although potential buyers gathered at the Mecklenburg County Courthouse, there was no sale.

Only a small number of people - perhaps a couple dozen - came for the auction. When all was said and done, none of them made a bid for the property. Some said the price was a little too steep.

Attorney James Pulliam, who is representing the lender now controlling the property, said the bid for the Epicentre - once the heart of uptown nightlife - was set at $95 million. No higher bids were offered.

The $95 million minimum bidding price reflects various expenses the lenders have incurred since taking over the property.

Potential buyers will have 10 days to bid a minimum of 5% over the minimum upset bid of $95 million, the attorney said. He added it will go back to the lender if there is no higher bid and the $95 million would be accepted.

Tuesday’s auction came after the complex went into foreclosure earlier this year. The COVID-19 pandemic and violent crime in the area drove away both businesses and customers.

Last June, the owner defaulted on an $85 million loan before the property went into receivership.

Duncan Anderson, who wanted to bid on the property but didn’t expect to have to pay $11 million over what the previous owners defaulted, says he’s going back to the drawing board to make sure the money makes sense in this economy. Still, he’s hoping to be in the running for the prime location.

”The Epicentre really holds the energy of uptown CLT. Whoever really actually controls that and can create the environment for people to be safe, things for family and friends to do, a place for people to come and have a good time, just lounging and having a good time, think it holds the energy for uptown Charlotte,” Anderson said.

Related: What’s next for the Epicentre?

In the meantime, the Epicentre has only a handful of tenants keeping it afloat.

“Business has been very hit or miss,” explained Kishla Jones-Gibbs, a manager of World of Beer, one of the last tenants standing.

She hopes a new owner will bring more business into the area.

“I just hope that these places, we can get people in, people that actually can rent these spaces that are empty...and just kind of get it back to where it used to be,” she said.

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