Ivanishvili’s GCF Ready to Transfer 8 Tourist Projects to Investors

The Georgian Co-Investment Fund (GCF), founded by former Prime Minister of Georgia, billionaire Bidzina Ivanishvili, has announced that it is ready to hand over eight projects without any commercial benefit to itself, to those investors who provide successful implementation of said projects within the set deadlines, namely touristic projects in Tbilisi and the regions of a total investment cost of USD 574 million.

The Chairman of the Supervisory Board of the Co-investment Fund, Irakli Karseladze, highlighted the profitability of the projects, taking into account the growing tourism potential of Georgia. “In the future, all these projects can become new business cards of Georgia as they provide a unique package of features, as well as contributing to raising tourist flow and tourism sector development throughout the country,” said the Chairman.

Of the projects, five are Tbilisi-based hotels and three are hotel complexes in the regions. The construction of the majority of them started in 2013 and some of them are expected to begin operating in the near future.

Hotel Shekvetili, located on Georgia’s Black Sea coast and tagged for completion in late 2016, is the first hotel in Georgia to have a swimming pool connected to the sea. The investment sum of this project is USD 77 million.

The Magnolia recreational complex, with an investment of USD 80 million, is expected to be completed in 2019, and Hotel Ganmukhuri in Georgia’s Black Sea village of the same name, will open in 2018, having run up a cost of USD 40 million.

Two hotels will be built on Erekle II Square in the historic center of Tbilisi with a total investment cost of USD 49 million. One of the hotels will be opened next year, while the second one won’t open its doors until 2019.

The construction of one USD 90 million hotel on Freedom Square and one of a higher scale (USD 200 million), Hotel Sololaki, will be finished in 2018 and 2019, respectively.

Within the presented program, the GCF is also ready to hand over the Tabori project, which will be implemented on Tabori Mountain in Tbilisi, near Mtatsminda. It will cost USD 40 million and should open in 2018. The Fund announced that under the same conditions, 29 hectares of land near the Tbilisi Botanic Garden, purchased under controversy last week, are also ready for transfer.

“If investors are able to carry work out under the current conditions or are able to offer a better option, we also agree to concede the 29 hectares of land that we acquired this week. As a gift, they will also get 10 hectares of land owned by the Fineservice Company, which, in due time, was acquired at the investor’s request and with the support of the state budget explicitly without the right to build in order to protect the green space,” said Karseladze.

The Chairman also notes that the projects have social value. Approximately 15,000 people are or will be involved in construction works, while the hotels themselves are anticipated to provide employment for around 2,500 employees.

USD 216 million of the USD 574 million combined total value of the projects has already been invested. The GCF claim that any of the above projects are can be handed over to investors at any stage of their development if conditions are met.

Eka Karsaulidze

09 May 2016 15:25