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Huge Dutch housing corporation salvaged from collapse

Tags: Excerpts from the Windmill

ROTTERDAM The largest Dutch housing corporation Vestia is experiencing serious liquidity problems, thanks to investments in highly speculative financial derivates. Instead of netting quick millions from which to build more public housing, the corporation found itself topping up the value of evaporating derivates, victims of the economic crunch and low interest rates in Europe. Vestia, which owns 89,000 housing units spread mainly around the Rotterdam region, was in danger of bankruptcy when it sought help from regulators and fellow housing corporations. CEO Erik Staal who was paid over twice the pay limit for public officials, was replaced by experienced trouble trouble-shooter Gerard Erents who previously rescued Amsterdam-based Rochdale. Vestia remained aloof from the 350-member housing corporation umbrella in the country.