Caribbean News Now!

About Us Contact Us

Countries/Territories

Jump to your country or territory of interest

Advertise with us

Reach our daily visitors from around the Caribbean and throughout the world. Click here for rates and placements.

Contribute

Submit news and opinion for publication

Subscribe

Click here to receive our daily regional news headlines by email.

Archives

Click here to browse our extensive archives going back to 2004

Also, for the convenience of our readers and the online community generally, we have reproduced the complete Caribbean Net News archives from 2004 to 2010 here.

Climate Change Watch

The Caribbean is especially vulnerable to rising sea levels brought about by global warming. Read the latest news and information here...

Follow Caribbean News Now on Twitter
Connect with Caribbean News Now on Linkedin



News from the Caribbean:


Back To Today's News

Dubai acquires major stake in operator of iconic Bahamas resort
Published on April 7, 2014 Email To Friend    Print Version

atlantis.jpg
The Atlantis Paradise Island resort

By Alison Lowe
Nassau Guardian Business Editor

NASSAU, Bahamas -- An investment arm of the Dubai government has bought a major stake in Kerzner International Holdings, the international hotel operator that manages the Atlantis Paradise Island resort, and has replaced the company’s founder and chairman, Sol Kerzner.

The move by the Investment Corporation of Dubai (ICD) to buy the stake from the family of the company’s founder and several institutional investors, comes two years to the month that Kerzner sold its flagship properties – Atlantis Paradise Island and Atlantis The Palm – to creditor Brookfield Asset Management (BAM) and partner Dubai World in a debt restructuring.

A spokesperson for ICD declined to comment when asked exactly what stake the corporation had taken in Kerzner International Holdings, which is also part-owned by Goldman Sachs and California-based Colony Capital. However, Guardian Business has learned that the shareholding is not a majority one, and the Associated Press reported that ICD would take a stake of 46 percent.

With the completion of the buy-out, Sol Kerzner, the visionary business magnate behind the establishment of Atlantis on Paradise Island, has been replaced as chairman by CEO of ICD, Mohammed Al Shaibani.

In an emailed response to the Nassau Guardian, a Kerzner spokesperson said the buy-out and departure of Sol Kerzner from the company would not alter its strategy in a way that would impact its Bahamas operations.

Kerzner International Holdings continued as a resort management, development and branding company responsible for the management of Atlantis and the One&Only Ocean Club after it divested of these assets in 2012.

“This does not alter our strategy led by Alan Leibman (Kerzner International Holdings CEO), Kerzner continues to focus on positioning the business for long-term, sustainable and global growth through our asset-light business model. We will continue to build world-class, must-see entertainment resort destinations and ultra-luxury resorts and hotels in the most spectacular locations and provide amazing experiences for our guests.”

In a statement issued to Guardian Business, Leibman said: “Kerzner is entering an exciting new chapter in our business. We are happy to have ICD as a major shareholder as they recognize the value driven by the world-class experiences and destinations delivered by the Kerzner brands. We look forward to their support as we continue to execute on our global growth strategy.”

Leibman described Sol Kerzner as a man who “truly impacted the entire world of hospitality and created the entertainment destination resort concept.”

“Personally, he has been a great mentor to me throughout my career. I am looking forward to continuing to grow the company that he founded and take it to the next level with new projects and developments around the world,” he added.

George Markantonis, president and managing director of Atlantis for Brookfield Hospitality, the Paradise Island-based resort’s owner, declined to comment on the transaction but paid tribute to Kerzner’s role in building Atlantis and the company.

“We’re just happy that Mr Kerzner will get a chance for some well-deserved rest. The good news is that he has a home in Ocean Club Estates, and so hopefully we’ll get to see more of him.”

Markantonis said that Brookfield’s primary focus at this time is on the refinancing of its $2.3 billion in debt, an effort which must be concluded within this year.

“It’s a critical step and it’s very important it gets done. I’m very optimistic we will see a resolution in the next few months. I do know our company intends to finish the refinancing much sooner than September 2014 (the deadline set by its creditors).”

Sources contacted by the Nassau Guardian said that they did not foresee that Kerzner’s departure would have a major impact on operations at the Atlantis resort or the One&Only Ocean Club property, despite the fact that he had played an active role as chairman. Brookfield Hospitality was said to be significantly more of a determinant of the overall strategic direction of the property, being primarily responsible for decisions on capital expenditures, among other important elements.

In a statement, Al Shaibani said the investment in Kerzner International Holdings comes on the back of Dubai’s push to boost its hotel and tourism industry as the city prepares to host the World Expo in 2020.

“This investment reaffirms ICD's commitment to support the long-term growth of our domestic hospitality market, a key pillar of and growth sector for the Dubai economy,” Al Shaibani said.

ICD’s holdings include the Middle East's biggest airline Emirates and a stake in Emaar Properties, the builder of the world’s tallest tower, the Burj Khalifa.

Republished with permission of the Nassau Guardian
 
Reads: 3113





Click here to receive daily news headlines from Caribbean News Now!



Back...

Comments:

No comments on this topic yet. Be the first one to submit a comment.

Back...

Send us your comments!  

Send us your comments on this article. All fields are required.

For your contribution to reach us, you must (a) provide a valid e-mail address and (b) click on the validation link that will be sent to the e-mail address you provide.  If the address is not valid or you don't click on the validation link, we will never see it!

Your Name:

Your Email:

(Validation required)

Comments:
Enter Code



Please note that, if you are using an AT&T domain email address, e.g. att.net, bellsouth.net, sbcglobal.net, the verification email will likely not be delivered. This is outside of our control and the only remedy seems to be for readers to complain to AT&T





Disclaimer
User comments posted on this website are the sole views and opinions of the comment author and are not representative of Caribbean News Now or its staff. Caribbean News Now accepts no liability and will not be held accountable for user comments.
Caribbean News Now reserves the right to remove, edit or censor any comments. Any content that is considered unsuitable, unlawful or offensive, includes personal details, advertises or promotes products, services or websites or repeats previous comments will not be approved.
Before posting, please refer to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.



Other Headlines:



Regional Sports: