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Sultan of Brunei could buy Sahara's hotels in London and New York for $2.2 billion

Monday, 18 August 2014 - 12:00pm IST | Place: Mumbai | Agency: dna webdesk

The Sultan of Brunei could be paying the Sahara group a whopping $2.2 billion to buy all the three properties, New York's Plaza Hotel, Dream Hotel and London's Grosvenor House, the Wall Street Journal reported. An investment firm affiliated with the Sultan might relieve Subrata Roy of his ordeal.

Madison Capital, a real estate giant based in New York, was also interested in Sahara's New York properties, and had reportedly offered $800 million for The Plaza and Dream Downtown. The poonawallah family, on the other hand, had reportedly shown interest only in the London property.

Page Six reported, "The sultan would not have a say in the day-to-day operation of the hotels but would be the controlling owner in partnership with two investors who already have stakes in the properties, Hampshire Hotels and Saudi Prince Alwaleed, said Manhattan-based hotel analyst Sean Hennessey, CEO of Lodging Investment Advisors." The Sultan is infamous for imposing Sharia Law that legalises death by stoning for gays and adulterers. 

Last week, Subrata Roy had told the court that it had finalised the deal for selling its foreign properties, while a foreign bank had agreed to provide a bank guarantee of Rs 5000 crore. Roy's counsel had told the Supreme Court that the name of the concerned parties could not be revealed unless the final deal was signed, but the agreement and the in-principle approval of the bank guarantee was already in place. The Court had granted an extension of 15 days to Roy to complete the deals and raise the money.

Roy has to raise Rs 10,000 crore to be granted a bail, out of which half is to be paid in cash and half in bank guarantee. Roy has to return over Rs 24000 crore to people from whom he had raised money, the instrument of which was later adjudged to be illegal. The total money to be returned with added interest touches almost Rs 40,000 crore.

The Court has asked Roy to submit details of the negotiations to sell the domestic properties as well and made it clear that further extensions for the negotiations would not be allowed, according to media reports.

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