The nightclub has been responsible for major Las Vegas events since 2013, including residencies from Tiësto, Calvin Harris, Oliver Heldens and Armin van Buuren. The company was also responsible for the burgeoning of Omnia Nightclub. But, it was recently reported that Hakkasan Group Chairman Khadem Al-Qubaisi was detained for his apparent role in the diversion of billions of dollars from the Malaysian Government.
New information has now surfaced, alleging that at least $10 million used in Hakkasan’s startup capital was unlawfully transferred from a Malaysian government entity, 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB). Thanks to a Malaysian investigative journalism website, documents have been uncovered that show how capital from 1MDB could have been illegally used to fund the birth of Hakkasan.
To make a very long and complicated story short, 1MDB sent money through an external company (who eventually changed their name) to Hakkasan’s parent company, Tasameem Real Estate LLC, also owned by Al-Qubaisi.
1MDB also received $1.7 billion from Goldman Sachs to be put towards improving Malaysia’s struggling economy, but Al-Qubasi helped Jho Low, a major Malaysian financer and agent (and tabloid party-boy), transfer $158 million into that same external account used to transfer money to Hakkasan.
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Okay, so basically Al-Qubaisi is sketchy AF, and while the information is not enough to prove that Hakkasan was funded entirely on illegal capital, it still proves that something weird and illegal was more than likely happening.
A source told the New York Post that U.S. investigators will question an undisclosed party in Europe next month, who they expect to help bring new light to the situation. It’s also possible that the nightclub might be able to avoid seizure, thanks to 1MDB’s government involvement.
The list of Jho Low’s alleged co-conspirators in the scandal include Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, Red Granite Productions Chairman Riza Aziz, and more.
So what does this all mean for the future of Hakkasan? Well, no one really knows yet. But, more information will arise soon that should make everything more clear. For now, Hakkasan is still open and thriving with events, but that might not last very long.