Court filing will halt Sharkey’s sale |

Court filing will halt Sharkey’s sale

Kurt Hildebrand

Sharkey’s will remain open while it undergoes reorganization under Chapter 11 bankruptcy, an attorney for the casino said today.

Reno attorney Stephen R. Harris said he would file on behalf of The Holder Group Sharkey’s in U.S. Bankruptcy Court today or Friday.

“Sharkey’s will remain open and we’re current with all the employees and payments on the first mortgage,” he said.

Harris said the filing will stay a trustee’s sale for seven parcels, including Sharkey’s, belonging to The Holder Group Sharkey’s that is scheduled for May 1 at the Douglas County Judicial and Law Enforcement Building.

A notice in Wednesday’s edition of The Record-Courier said Holder owes creditors, including Carson Valley Inn owner Mike Pegram’s See Horse I, $3.79 million.

The seven parcels are among nine owned by Holder Group in Douglas County, according to the assessor’s website.

Holder purchased Sharkey’s from owner Milos “Sharkey” Begovich in January 2002 for $1.612 million. The next month the company put the 1,650-item Sharkey’s collection up for auction. News reports at the time quoted the auctioneer’s estimate that the collection itself was worth $2.5 million.

The purchase of Sharkey’s was the beginning of an expansion of Holder Hospitality in the early part of the century. Owner Hal Holder purchased Carson City’s KPTL radio station in March 2002. In 2003, the company announced plans to build an Indian casino on land belonging to the Washoe Tribe near Sunridge. In March 2004, when Holder sold KPTL to Genoa resident Jerry Evans, he owned seven casinos including Sharkey’s.

According to the Douglas County Recorder’s Office, Holder obtained a loan for up to $2.2 million from Northern Nevada Bank recorded on May 18, 2004. The next month, on June 3, the Mineral County Independent News reported the company received approval from gaming regulators to buy four more casinos in northeastern Nevada, including the Stockmen and the Commercial in Elko, the Scoreboard in Spring Creek and the Red Garter in Wendover. Documents filed with the Recorder’s Office show Holder continued to raise the stakes, increasing the limit on the loan to $2.7 million in January 2005, to $3 million in August 2005 and to $4 million in March 2006.

In May 2007, Holder announced he was putting the entire company up for sale for $200 million, and that he was establishing a $15 million fund to encourage employees to stay with the company until it sold. Banks started calling in notes in August 2008 and six months later the company closed the Silver Club in Sparks. In July 2009 six Holder casinos sought bankruptcy protection, though Sharkey’s was reported to be in good shape.