Investment from China in Kushner Manhattan property is off

07 April, 2017, 08:29 | Author: Leticia Walters
  • Investment from China in Kushner Manhattan property is off

"Kushner Companies is no longer in discussions with Anbang about 666 Fifth Ave.'s potential redevelopment, and our firms have mutually agreed to end talks regarding the property", a spokesman for Kushner Co.

A senior White House official told The Associated Press earlier this month that Kushner would recuse himself from any government business to which Anbang was a party if the deal went through.

Talks with a Chinese company seeking a stake in a Fifth Avenue skyscraper owned by the family of Jared Kushner are over.

Members of Congress had raised concerns about Anbang's ties to the Chinese government and about a conflict of interest for Jared Kushner, who is a senior adviser to President Trump and is married to Ivanka Trump. On Jan. 19 he stepped down from that role, and he has since sold his stake in the building to a family trust.

An expanded version of this report appears on WSJ.com.

Jared Kushner was the company president when the plan to redevelop the family's flagship building, which serves as the company headquarters, was drawn up. WSJ's Jerry Seib explains on Lunch Break with Tanya Rivero. Anbang's withdrawal from negotiations has thrown the future of 660 Fifth Avenue into question, although a spokesman says that the Kushner Companies is in discussions with other investors to bring the project to life.

The family paid a record $1.8 billion for the tower in 2007, in a move that the Kushners hoped would symbolize their transformation from an operator of suburban garden apartments to a major real-estate player in Manhattan, the most lucrative and treacherous market in the country.

The development came days after Democratic lawmakers wrote letters to the Office of White House Counsel and the Treasury Secretary, expressing concern that the possible deal could breach federal ethics rules, and as Mr Trump is preparing to meet Chinese President Xi Jinping for their first summit at Mr Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida. It purchased the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in NY, and it owns many other assets. The company has come under scrutiny as it has moved expand its holdings in the U.S. In 2015, Anbang bought Manhattan's iconic Waldorf Astoria hotel for almost $2 billion.

Jared Kushner sold his stake in the building as part of his agreement with the Office of Government Ethics, but his family would have stood to benefit from an Anbang deal.

The Kushner family owns or manages 20,000 apartments, 13 million square feet of office space and industrial properties in several states, including New York, New Jersey, Maryland and IL. If you already subscribe, thank you.

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