President Trump has bragged at length about his business acumen. A number of people even cited his decades of experience in the business world as a reason to vote for him. Trump might describe himself as a deal-making master, but a new financial report for some of his biggest investments — his Scottish golf resorts — tells a different story.
The Associated Press recently obtained a financial report filed with the British government that shows Trump has lost millions of dollars on these resorts for three years in a row. The report shows that losses at the two resorts more than doubled last year, totaling 17.6 million pounds, $23 million. Revenue for the resorts also plummeted.
The Trump Organization has blamed the losses on the fact that one of the resorts had to be shut down for half the year for construction. The company also said that it took an 8 million pound ($10 million) loss last year because of fluctuations in the value of the British pound.
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However, the company has faced several other setbacks in the last few years, and they don’t show any signs of stopping.
Many of the company’s problems stem from the Trump International Golf Links, located outside of Aberdeen and overlooking the North Sea coast.
Local residents, as well as Scotland’s environmental agencies, have recently come after the Trump Organization, accused the company of using “bullying tactics” to pursue additional development, and objecting to some of its building plans.
Trump and his company have also both faced opposition as a result of his constant stream of controversial remarks. These challenges started before Trump even officially took office.
For example, last summer, the U.K. Supreme Court ruled unanimously against Trump’s efforts to stop construction on a wind farm that he said would ruin the resort’s views. He was also stripped of his title as business ambassador for Scotland and had his honorary degree from Aberdeen’s Robert Gordon University revoked.
Both the Scottish government and the university said that Trump’s comments about Muslims during his campaign influenced their decisions.
It also looks like the Trump Organization will lose its bid to host the upcoming Scottish Open at the Trump International Golf Links.
Martin Gilbert, the CEO of Aberdeen Asset Management, one of the Scottish Open’s major sponsors, told a local newspaper in July that he doubted Trump’s course would end up hosting the event. Gilbert said:
‘There’s no decision made but, look, there are clear issues. Politics aside, Trump would be an ideal venue — but you can’t put politics aside.’
The AP asked a spokesman for Aberdeen Asset Management, James Thorneley, to clarify Gilbert’s comments. Thorneley simply said:
‘It’s pretty kind of obvious, right?’
He refused to comment further.
On the same day that the report about the resorts’ finances was released, a petition against Trump’s development efforts reached 94,860 signatures. The global corporate watchdog group behind the petition has cited the environmental objections as a reason for people to sign, arguing on the website:
‘Now we have a chance to reject Trump’s hatred and protect our environment in one fell swoop.’
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