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First Niagara Bank subsidiary takes control of Krispy Kreme site

First Niagara Bank now owns the closed Krispy Kreme restaurant on Walden Avenue in Cheektowaga.

The bank's First Niagara Funding took title to the vacant donut shop Sept. 30, two weeks after the Buffalo area's last Krispy Kreme location went out of business. Financially-troubled Krispy Kreme franchisee, Dynamic Doughnuts, of Cheektowaga, closed the store Sept. 13, ending retail and wholesale operations of the brand in Western New York.

"[Dynamic Doughnuts] handed over the deed in lieu of foreclosure," said First Niagara spokeswoman Leslie Garrity.

The bank will seek a new owner for the high-profile retail site, at 2021 Walden Ave., across from the Walden Galleria.

Dynamic had obtained a $3.5 million mortgage through First Niagara for the property in March 2002. By relinquishing ownership to the bank, the business satisfied a remaining mortgage debt of $1.45 million.

Representatives of Dynamic's parent firm, the Cosentino Companies, did not return reporter phone calls regarding the transaction. The company had unsuccessfully sought a sale/lease-back deal for the Walden Avenue site this spring in an attempt to raise capital, putting a $2.9 million value on the property.

The family-run Cosentino Companies has seen its once-burgeoning hospitality and restaurant portfolio nearly evaporate in recent years. In addition to the closure of the last of its once-thriving stable of Krispy Kreme outlets, it lost more than a dozen TGI Fridays restaurants across upstate New York and Florida to bankruptcy this summer.

The company inked a deal to sell its last local hotel property, the Comfort Suites on Main Street in downtown Buffalo, back in March. Cosentino previously sold its Radisson Hotel and Quality Inn properties on Genesee Street in Cheektowaga, across from the Buffalo Niagara International Airport.

The business has also sold off several of its other local real estate holdings, including the building housing company headquarters, at 4225 Genesee St.

e-mail: slinstedt@buffnews.com

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