Donald Trump’s Scottish golf resorts suffer heavy loss

US president had to plough 1.3 m into debt-ridden Aberdeenshire resort as oil price crash made its popularity

Donald Trump’s loans to his golf resorts in Scotland have increased to more than PS150m after their losses last year accelerated, partly because of the oil price crash and currency costs.

The latest accounts for his network of Scottish companies present “hes to” plough another PS1. 3m into his debt-ridden resort in Aberdeenshire to keep it afloat after the North Sea crisis assured its popularity slump among local golfers.

Trump International Golf Links Scotland lost virtually PS1. 2m in 2016, forcing Trump to increase his interest-free loans to the resort to nearly PS41m ($ 54 m) while he was campaigning for the presidency last year.

Trump’s much larger and better known golfing resort and hotel at Turnberry in Ayrshire, which he bought in 2014, has furthermore suffered heavy loss, largely because of its partial close for refurbishment and house runs.

Trump increased his funding of the resort by PS49m last year. In all, Trump Turnberry owes Trump PS1 12 m ($ 146 m ), the accounts for its mother company Golf Recreation Scotland show, virtually double the PS63m it owed him the previous year. In all, his interest-free loans to both resorts reached PS153m ($ 200 m) by the end of last year.

His son Eric Trump, who was given operational control of the smaller resort north of Aberdeen just before his father became president in January, said 2016 had been a difficult year, and hinted that those fiscal troubles were continuing.

The” crash in oil price and economic downturn” which had made the north-east of Scotland had find its income fall by 12.4%, he said, while winter blizzards had seriously injury part of its 18 -hole championship course.

That pushed up its operating loss by 43%.” The industry is both competitive and difficult, factors that were heightened by the ongoing dip in the local economy, and adverse weather conditions ,” Eric Trump said in the firm’s annual report.

The volatile global economy has now been reached Trump’s ambitions for the course. He was forced to dramatically scale back his schemes for a five-star hotel, timeshare flats and private villas on the site after the financial crisis in 2008, and is only now trying planning permission for its promised second 18 -hole course.

Largely due to its close for refurbishment, Turnberry’s loss in 2016 more than doubled from the previous year to PS17. 6m. In addition, the Trump Organization, which is now run by Trump’s sons and their lawyer Allen Weisselberg, lost another PS9. 6m because of currency transaction costs and currency loss. The Trumps fund Turnberry in US dollars but pay its bills in sterling.

The accounts said that after the resort was fully reopened on 30 June last year, its income for the remaining year jumped to PS6. 7m. In the previous six months, when the hotel was partly open, its turnover stood at PS2. 3m.

Eric Trump insisted these losses would soon be stemmed and then reversed.” It is expected that revenue will increase in subsequent years as the property is re-established as an industry-leading resort ,” he wrote in the accounts.

Both firms owe their survival to the Trump Organization’s continued financing support, these accounts proved.

Read more: www.theguardian.com

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