Friends with financial benefits, that is. Incredible ones at that. Property associated with both Kushner and Cohen seemed to change hands quickly and for an exaggerated sum of money — that’s a good friendship indeed.
According to USA Today, Jared Kushner purchased three properties on the banks of a toxic Brooklyn canal, which triggered a series of unusual real estate deals and a windfall profit from transactions financed by Signature Bank, a bank closely tied to the Trump family and includes previous board member – wait for it – Ivanka Trump.
— Eric Umansky (@ericuman) June 8, 2018
Kushner Companies led a joint venture in 2014, and paid $72.5 million for three lots of land along the polluted canal to a company owned by New York developer Herbert Chaves.
Chaves’ firms used that cash from Kushner to buy apartments from none other than Trump “fixer” Michael Cohen. Chaves paid $32 million for four apartments that Cohen bought one to three years prior for $11.4 million. The market value of the apartments collectively was $6.6 million, according to New York City property assessment records. That’s about one-fifth of the purchase price. Cohen then used his $32 million to immediately reinvest in a new deal – with Herbert Chaves. In 2015, Chaves and Cohen partnered together to purchase a Manhattan apartment building for $58 million. The next month, Cohen purchased yet another Manhattan apartment building for $10.5 million.
That’s a lot of money being tossed around now, isn’t it?
The three Brooklyn canal properties originally purchased by Kushner in 2014 were used as a parking lot for utility service vehicles, and had significant contamination issues. Not only was it strange that a bank backed that kind of investment, the property value inflation over land that is barely usable is also curious: the property remains zoned in a manufacturing district and the significant environmental cleanup is still in progress.
Despite this, Kushner sold the property earlier this year and made an impressive profit. The $72.5 million he paid in late 2014 somehow blossomed to $115 million in less than four years when it was sold to the international property firm RFR Holding.