by Rachel Ogbu//
Kola Aluko has been living under the radar for years with the Nigerian government hot on his heels. But today, he resurfaced as UK news claim he is in hiding and living out on the yacht he once rented to JAY-Z and Beyoncé in 2015 for $900,000 a week.
The 47-year-old energy businessman’s name came up as the owner of one of New York City’s most expensive residential buildings which is now being foreclosed and auctioned off by a bank after “the owner” failed to pay the loan back. According to records obtained by Bloomberg, Apartment 79 (on “Billionaires’ Row”) was sold to Aluko in December 2014 for $50.9million, making it the eighth most expensive unit in the building, but just a year later, the bank took hold of the 6,420-square-foot apartment after the mortgage loan wasn’t paid back and plans to sell it next month for $21.4million. He had taken out a huge loan worth $35.5million for the mortgage to pay for Apartment 79 from Banque Havilland bank in Luxembourg.
It is also believed that his yacht called the ‘Galactica Star’ was listed too as collateral in the foreclosure after he bought the penthouse, hiding the purchase behind an LLC, One57 79 Inc., according to PropertyShark. Donna Olshan, president of high-end Manhattan brokerage Olshan Realty Inc. was quoted as saying, “It’s probably the most expensive foreclosure we’ve ever seen in luxury development. I don’t know of a foreclosure that’s larger than that.”
There are speculations that Aluko might be having money problems since the Nigerian Federal Government tried to freeze his assets in February as part of a money-laundering probe. Last year, the Los Angeles Times reported that Aluko sold his Bel-Air, Los Angeles mansion for $21.5 million, losing about $3 million on the property. Another $14.7 million Beverly Hills property that he rented to singer, Ariana Grande was sold for just $13 million in 2016 and the NY times claims he owes government another $61,000 in taxes on an apartment at 1049 Fifth Ave. which a Shell company he controls bought for $8.5 million in 2013.
The bank is planning to auction off the four-bedroom apartment on July 19.
UK Based Strategic, multidisciplinary Writer with an eye for innovation and pixel perfection. MA in New Media and Internet Technologies. “Although my skill set is vast, my greatest expertise revolve in the worlds of social media, content creation and print collateral. My wish is to combine my knowledge and experience in these areas, to deliver the best creative to my employer’s clients and their audiences.”