Tuesday, April 12, 2022

Jared Kushner’s hidden genius? To make terrible decisions – yet keep failing upwards


    That’s not Kushner’s only victory. While he might have the charisma of a soggy tissue, Mr Ivanka Trump seems to have a knack for failing upwards. In 2007, for example, a 26-year-old Kushner urged his family’s real estate company to pay a then-record $1.8bn to purchase 666 Fifth Avenue, a skyscraper in Manhattan. This turned out to be a terrible decision. It might have had devastating financial consequences for the Kushner family had it not been for a sudden stroke of luck: in 2018, in the middle of Trump’s presidency, a Canadian asset-management company, Brookfield Asset Management, agreed to take a 99-year lease on the building, paying a huge amount of rent upfront. Funnily enough, the Qatar Investment Authority was a major investor in Brookfield and, at the time, Kushner was backing a blockade on the Gulf kingdom. This was all a complete coincidence, and there was no intention of persuading Kushner to reverse his support for the blockade, Qatar has stressed. And, to be fair, the blockade wasn’t lifted until this year. Still, if Kushner keeps running into coincidences like that one imagines his investment firm will do very well indeed.

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