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Kingdom Holding sells Four Seasons Toronto for €152 million

The Saudi group of Prince Al-Walid ben Talal, Kingdom Holding, announced it sold the Four Seasons Toronto for 152 million euros (225 million Canadian dollars) to Shahid Khan.

The sale of the upscale property, which belonged to the Saudi investment fund Kingdom Holding since 2012, was to Shahid Khan. This Pakistani-American is the founder of the group Flex-N-Gate (which specializes manufacturing automobile parts) and CEO of Jacksonville Jaguars, a member National Football League. The Four Seasons Toronto is located in the neighborhood of Yorkville, in the center of Toronto. It has 259 rooms, including 42 suites. The property will continue to be operated by the group Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts.

Kingdom Holding bought this hotel four years earlier for 200 million Canadian dollars (close to 180 million euros), but despite the drop in face value it declared earnings of 11.5 million euros in sales. The group has a diversified portfolio. In the hotel industry it is present in 15 countries through 22 upscale properties, two of which are currently under construction. Among these emblematic addresses, the group owns the walls  of the George V in Paris as well as the Plaza in New York. It also has shares in banking (Citigroup), IT (Apple), and amusement parks (Euro Disney). It is also the second shareholder in Twitter. But while it led the investments market for several years, will the famous sovereign fund become a seller under pressure from the drop in oil prices and the public debt that is taking off, or has it just fallen into a "strategic rotation" of its assets? Time will tell.

Equal shares of the Four Seasons Hotels & Resorts belong to the Bill Gates Cascade Investment Fund (45%) and Kingdom Holding (45%), while 10% is owned by its founder Isadore Sharp. As of January 1, the Canadian hotelier ranked worldwide 49th hotel operator worldwide, with 101 properties for a total of 21,755 rooms, according to data published by Hospitality ON.

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