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Buy properties through tax havens

When the controversial private equity firm Blackstone acquires properties in Copenhagen, it happens through a web of companies, which ends up in the well-known tax havens in the Cayman Island.

It can Extra Magazine now reveal, after having undergone a sea of selskabskonstruktioner.

Since 2017 has Blackstone purchased around 160 properties in Copenhagen with a total value of seven billion dollars.

For each property has a private equity fund set up a company, which ends up in a Danish holding company, which in turn is owned by a parent company in Luxembourg, which is an often-used country in tax havens-constructions.

Away ends in the ownership of the Cayman Island, which is a known tax havens.

Several experts says to Ekstra Bladet, that it is a classic tax haven-construction, as Blackstone uses.

Thus, also, Hannah Brejnholt Tranberg, skatteekspert of people-to-people Sammenvirke:

- the Cayman Island is a tax haven defined in the way that there is no transparency, and that there is a very low tax rate. The reason to move the money there is that you want to avoid a high tax, says Hannah Brejnholt Tranberg.

It is not a coincidence that the money must first through Luxembourg, says Torben Bagge, skatteadvokat and external skattelektor in tax law at Aarhus University:

- move the surplus of the dividends free of tax from Denmark to Luxembourg, he says, and elaborates.

- You can move the money as a dividend from the companies free in the EU, and when you choose Luxembourg, it is because that they can offer some attractive tax agreements with a number of other countries. If you had chosen to move the money from Denmark to the Cayman, you would have to pay dividend tax, but because you are choosing Luxembourg, you end up usually with a much lower taxation.

Both experts stated that the money is only being passed on by way of a sale of the properties.

Calder Topco is the last Danish company before the ownership ends up in Luxembourg and finally in the Cayman Island. Photo: Jonas Olufson

Blackstone apartments

38 properties

27 properties

24 properties

21 properties

20 properties

16 properties

15 properties

161 properties, 2.536 leases, 280.331 Sqm

Source: 360 North

Trump support is behind

It is one of the world's richest men, 72-year-old Stephen Allen Schwarzman, who is listed as the reele owner of the properties in Denmark.

Donald Trump and Stephen Schwarzman are talking together. Photo: Kevin Lamarque

He started Blackstone in 1985, and the manager still private equity fund, as chairman of the board of directors. According to Forbes, he is the world's 100 richest man with a personal fortune of 89 billion, stemming crowns, and he is also among the 42 most powerful people in the world.

Since the presidential election he has become known as one of Donald Trumps most generous support. In addition to supporting Donald Trumps campaign, he has given large donations to a wide range of universities and public institutions.

Blackstone has, by his own admission real estate assets under management for a value of almost 760 billion.

- Properties was painted similar to

When Blackstone buy properties in Denmark, the company 360 North manage and be responsible for, among other things the rental of their properties.

360 North is located in Portland Towers as the house is an creative to the German embassy. Photo: Jonas Olufson

But the company is certainly not popular among the tenants.

Since 2016, there has been a reported 121 complaints with the rent in Copenhagen. In the four decisions, which Ekstra Bladet has seen, puts the board the rent down.

the Complaints go over a wide comb on too high rent, high deposit, clearing of attics without notice and vedligeholdelsesmangler.

Chairman of the Tenants ' LO Helene Toxværde says that she often hears about the apartments, which have been doubled and tripled the rents, after what she calls 'nålestiksrenoveringer'. It is typically the bathroom and the kitchen, which will be put in the stand.

- I have seen the properties, which was made-up corpses, in the sense that the apartments are so nice, but the overall state of maintenance was lousy, say LLO the president.

Frederik Gudme moved into the apartment, as he acutely stood and was looking for an apartment. Photo: Tariq Mikkel Khan.

On Godthåbsvej in the outer Frederiksberg lives the 26-year-old bilsælger Frederik Gudme in an apartment of 60 square meters to 9.275 dollars per month without heating. He moved into January after a short review, where it's all so fine.

Though the apartment according to the lease have been fully refurbished, there were several points that were not in order.

There was no lock on the back stairs, the floor was not treated, there lacked an extractor fan and a freezer - and then there were some black stains on the floor.

the Lock is not forsikringsgodkendt. Photo: Tariq Mikkel Khan

the Kitchen is missing both the freezer and extractor hood. Photo: Tariq Mikkel Khan

the Floor has not been treated. Photo: Tariq Mikkel Khan.

He has several times tried to turn to 360 North, he says, but they don't have the answer. After a half year in the apartment he noticed that the black spots had spread in the bedroom:

- Under the boards was filled with mold and the living creeping things, trickling around, telling Frederik Gudme.

360 North has refused to provide compensation for the period during which he lived in the apartment with mold.

the Mold was due to water damage. Photo: Private

Frederik Gudme living even by selling cars, so he understands well, that Blackstone will make money, but the way they do it, is he not in love with.

- It should just be so fast, cheap and easy for them, he says.

Frederik Gudme did not know that he paid too much in rent, before a friend told him it. Photo: Tariq Mikkel Khan.

After a mate told him that his rent was too high, he contacted The LO, which went into the matter.

recently, he has been huslejenævnets decision, which gives him a huslejenedsættelse of 2,000 crowns per month.

I hope that all who live to rent from them, be aware that they tinker with the rent, says Frederik Gudme.

Politicians are waiting for experts

Blackstones acquisition of 'The Victorian City', in Frederiksberg got the politicians on the track. The sale happened in spite of a registered deed from 1932 gives the tenants a right to buy the homes at a sale. An upcoming trial will determine whether the bearings can fraviste the Blackstone site.

The Victorian City of Frederiksberg is bought by Blackstone. Photo: Mogens flindt

the Democratic president, Mette Frederiksen, has also opened their eyes to the problem.

- If not Blackstone will do anything for the housing market in the long term, so I do not think they should be here, " says Mette Frederiksen, to Ekstra Bladet.

But instead of one on urgent measures, a fast-working group of experts submits a report to the politicians 1. October. They need to come up with proposals for amendments of the loophole in the boligreguleringsloven, which makes it possible for Blackstone to put the rent considerably.

Blackstone is not responding

Although the Blackstone is hovedrige and has a big administration, the company has not wanted to answer spørgsmålt. Since January has an Extra Leaf tried to get hold of them through numerous emails and phone calls to the office in Denmark. Nevertheless, the company is not returned. The same applies to the management company 360 North.

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