DGWB Ventures LLC name, construction site photo with bankruptcy tag

Facing $4.8 million in debt to 25 creditors, California real estate developer DGWB Ventures filed a voluntary petition for Chapter 11 bankruptcy relief on January 6, 2021, according to the US Bankruptcy Court for the Central District of California

DGWB Ventures, based in Santa Ana, California, currently owes $4,865,714.36 to 25 creditors — 10 of which are in the construction industry — with three secured claims and 22 unsecured claims, according to their bankruptcy filing.

The real estate company became a registered limited liability company (LLC) in 2000 under former registered agent, Michael Weisman. As of December 2019, DGWB Ventures’ registered agent and manager is listed as Jon Gothhold, according to the California Secretary of State. 

A real estate LLC allows investors to purchase and own real estate while being protected from personal liability — meaning all business is done under the name of the LCC compared to an individual. Every LLC must appoint a registered agent to manage legal communications on behalf of the business. Small businesses typically name the owner or an employee as the registered agent, however, businesses may also choose to hire a registered agent service. 

DGWB Ventures’ status is listed as active with the California Secretary of State. 

Weisman and Gothhold were also partners of a marketing and advertising agency known as Amusement Park, which is listed with the California Secretary of State as being headquartered at the same address as DGWB Ventures in Santa Ana. 

According to the California Secretary of State, Amusement Park’s status is currently listed as suspended after becoming a registered LLC in 2017. In Amusement Park’s Statement of Information document processed with the California Secretary of State in December 2017, the business type is described as a “business to hold financial investments.” 

At the time of their bankruptcy filing in January 2021, DGWB Ventures reported the following: 

  • $4,865,714.36 in total liabilities 
  • $8,227,212.44 in total assets 
  • $29,410 in total checking 
  • No accounts receivable listed 

A Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing provides a debtor with reorganization of their business affairs, debts, and assets. The debtor filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy relief is tasked with presenting a plan of reorganization to the overseeing bankruptcy court and the debtor’s creditors.

If the debtor fails to submit the plan of reorganization, the creditors are entitled to create one. The purpose of the plan for reorganization is to keep the debtor’s business alive while still paying back creditors over time. 

DGWB Ventures lists three secured claims, 22 unsecured claims

Citizens Business Bank is named with all three secured claims in the bankruptcy petition, totaling a combined $4,785,639.02 in claims. 

All three claims concern deeds of trust for DGWB Ventures’ principal place of business at 217 N. Main Street, Santa Ana, CA.

Of the three deeds of trust claims, a $2 million claim dates back to 2017, while two separate claims worth $1.7 million and $1 million both took place in 2018. 

DGWB Ventures also reported 22 unsecured claims worth a combined $80,075.34. 

Orange County Tax Collector is listed with the largest priority unsecured claim valued at $12,504.44 for property taxes. The California Franchise Tax Board and the IRS also are named as priority unsecured creditors with claims listed with unknown values. 

Of the 10 contractors, suppliers, and equipment lessors, Santa Ana-based SVA Architects is listed with the largest claim worth $12,500, which is a nonpriority unsecured claim. 

The remaining nine contractors, suppliers, and equipment lessors listed as creditors with nonpriority unsecured claims DGWB Ventures’ Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing include: 

  • AT&T Elevator – $77.34
  • Bay Alarm – $250.89
  • City of Santa Ana Water – $448.97
  • EnviroCare Pest Management – Unknown 
  • Fire Safety – Unknown 
  • GMS Elevator – $129.60
  • Hydrology Group – $1,800
  • SoCal Edison – $2,012.40
  • Waste Management – $274.68