Denis O’Brien linked to Caribbean property

Bahamas Leaks: Businessman is connected to same island as Dermot Desmond project

The island of Canouan in the Caribbean.

The island of Canouan in the Caribbean.

 

Businessman Denis O’Brien is linked to property on the Caribbean island resort of Canouan, where his former business partner Dermot Desmond has been involved in developing an ultra-exclusive hotel, villa, marina and golf complex, filings in the corporate registry in the Bahamas indicate.

Two Dublin businesswomen, who act as directors of a number of Mr O’Brien’s Irish companies, are listed as directors of companies in the Bahamas that, in turn, have links with the Canouan island resort.

The Bahamas registry is open to the public but difficult to access online and not searchable for particular names.

In a project organised by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, of which The Irish Times is a media partner, a searchable version of the registry is now available online.

The Bahamas are a well-known tax haven and there is nothing illegal about being connected with a company from that jurisdiction.

There are legitimate reasons, such as privacy and tax planning, for having a company registered there.

Mr Desmond and Swiss-Italian financier Antonio Saladino were involved jointly since 2010 in the $120 million (€107 million) development of the tiny island of Canouan, which has a population of approximately 1,500 people.

Fell out

An earlier effort to develop the resort involved Mr Saladino and Donald Trump.

The Pink Sands Club is due to open next month and a spokeswoman said the hotel will “set a new benchmark for a Caribbean archipelago already synonymous with ultra-exclusive hideaways”.

A request for a comment from Mr O’Brien’s spokesman met with no response.