Trump Organisation scraps Georgian property development

By bne IntelliNews January 9, 2017

The Trump Organisation has decided to scrap a Trump-branded real estate development venture in the Georgian beach resort of Batumi, it confirmed in a January 6 statement. The $250mn, 47-storey property is being developed by Georgia's Silk Road Group. President-elect Donald Trump himself signed the licensing agreement for the building in 2011.

The decision to withdraw from involvement in the Batumi development comes following the holding's December announcement that it would scrap a similar development venture in neighbouring Azerbaijan, and subsequent to Alan Garten, the organisation's general counsel, indicating that the group was set to make the same move in Georgia. 

The organisation has sought to distance itself from some of its more controversial partnerships in countries like Brazil, Saudi Arabia and Azerbaijan in recent months, to protect the incoming president against criticism over possible conflicts of interest and for having selected foreign partners suspected of corruption.

In Azerbaijan, a Trump Tower project was in 2012 leased to Garant Holding, a business conglomerate owned by Anar Mammadov, son of the country's transport minister Ziya Mammadov. Leaked US embassy cables describe Mammadov senior as corrupt even by Azerbaijani standards. Meanwhile, his son's business has a near-monopoly on activities related to the transport sector, such as bus and taxi services in the capital city of Baku, having won a suspiciously high number of government tenders for transport projects.

“[The parties] jointly announce their decision to formally end the development of Trump Tower, Batumi, … under the licence agreement executed in March 2011,” read the statement on the Georgian cancellation.

Silk Road Group, a local conglomerate comprising of transport, telecommunications, banking and real estate operations, would continue to develop the building without the Trump franchise, the statement added.

The deal between the company and the Trump Organisation was mediated by former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili, who presents himself as an old friend of Trump's. The outspoken politician, now active in Ukraine after having been stripped of his Georgian citizenship, is also one of the most anti-Russian politicians in the region. In an interview with CNN on January 6, Saakashvili said that Trump is "smart" and would not be "fooled" by Russia's Vladimir Putin; and that he expected him to be forceful in his dealings with Russia, because "that is the only language that Putin understands".

 

Related Articles

Beijing-backed bank to finance Chinese firms in Georgia with $1bn of capital

China will set up a bank with $1bn of capital to finance Chinese companies doing business in Georgia, according to a bilateral memorandum of understanding signed by the Georgian government and China ... more

Speaker wins election in Russia-backed Georgia breakaway region South Ossetia

Speaker of the de facto parliament of the Russian-backed breakaway South Ossetia region of Georgia, Anatoly Bibilov, has won a presidential election condemned by Tbilisi and the West as illegitimate, ... more

Georgia to replace combat aircraft fleet with drones

Georgia is to get rid of its fleet of 12 combat aircraft and replace them with drones, Eurasianet reported on March 7 citing Brigadier General Vladimir Chichibaia. Only one of the dozen Russian-made ... more

Register here to continue reading this article and 2 more for free or purchase 12 months full website access including the bne Magazine for just $119/year.

Already a subscriber or registered - click here to recover access.

If you a IntelliNews Pro user - click here to login.

Thank you. Please complete your registration by confirming your email address.
A confirmation email has been sent to the email address you provided.

To continue viewing our content you need to complete the registration process.

Please look for an email that was sent to with the subject line "Confirmation bne IntelliNews access". This email will have instructions on how to complete registration process. Please check in your "Junk" folder in case this communication was misdirected in your email system.

Already a subscriber or registered - click here to recover access.

If you a IntelliNews Pro user - click here to login.

If you have any questions please contact us at sales@intellinews.com

Subscribe to bne IntelliNews website and magazine

Subscribe to bne IntelliNews website and monthly magazine, the leading source of business, economic and financial news and commentary in emerging markets.

Your subscription includes:
  • Full access to the bne content daily news and features on the website
  • Newsletters direct to your mailbox
  • Print and digital subscription to the monthly bne magazine
  • Digital subscription to the weekly bne newspaper

Already a subscriber or registered - click here to recover access.

If you a IntelliNews Pro user - click here to login.

bne IntelliNews
$119 per year

All prices are in US dollars net of applicable taxes.

If you have any questions please contact us at sales@intellinews.com

Register for free to read bne IntelliNews Magazine. You'll receive a free digital subscription.

Already a subscriber or registered - click here to recover access.

If you a IntelliNews Pro user - click here to login.

Thank you. Please complete your registration by confirming your email address.
A confirmation email has been sent to the email address you provided.

IntelliNews Pro offers daily news updates delivered to your inbox and in-depth data reports.
Get the emerging markets newswire that financial professionals trust.

"No day starts for my team without IntelliNews Pro" — UBS

Thank-you for requesting an IntelliNews Pro trial. Our team will be in contact with you shortly.

Dismiss