Donald Trump’s Scottish resorts lose £9m in one year

Mr Trump unveils the multi-million pound refurbishment of the Trump Turnberry clubhouse. Picture: John Devlin
Mr Trump unveils the multi-million pound refurbishment of the Trump Turnberry clubhouse. Picture: John Devlin
Share this article
0
Have your say

Donald Trump’s Scottish golf courses lost more than £9 million last year, new figures have revealed.

Accounts for the businessman’s resorts at the Menie Estate in ­Aberdeenshire and Turnberry in Ayrshire show they both made losses.

The Ailsa Course at the Trump Turnberry Resort. Picture: David Cannon

The Ailsa Course at the Trump Turnberry Resort. Picture: David Cannon

The US presidential candidate opened the Trump International Golf Links in the north-east of Scotland in 2012 following a battle with environmental campaigners opposed to the construction of a course on protected sand dunes.

Mr Trump, whose representatives had initially said they would spend up to £1 billion on the development, hailed the course as the greatest in the world and pledged to create 800 jobs at the resort.

READ MORE: Donald Trump threat to jail Hillary Clinton dismissed as ‘quip’

However, company accounts just published for 2015 show that it lost money for the fourth year in a row since Mr Trump struck the first ball at the course.

It made a loss of £1,096,108 last year compared to losses of £1,139,513 in 2014, £1.8m in 2013 and £1.7m in 2012.

The resort, which is valued at £31.5m, had an operating loss of £815,413 but increased its turnover to £3m during the year - a jump of £200,000 from the previous 12 months.

The business employed just 95 people during its fourth year of operations who were paid a total of £1.9m.

READ MORE: Hundreds to protest Donald Trump visit to Turnberry

The accounts show that Turnberry, which Mr Trump’s firm purchased for £39.5m in June 2014, had a turnover of £11.4m but made a loss of £8.4m for 2015.

The company said the loss was down to significant investments being made in the resort by the Trump Organisation.

Mr Trump, 70, who is under fire in the US for his comments about women, employed 337 people at Turnberry during the year who were paid a total of £6m in wages.

Due to the losses Mr Trump’s companies did not pay any corporation tax in the UK.

Despite the losses, the Republican Party nominee’s representatives remain positive about the future of his investments in Scotland.

In his director report for the Menie Estate, the businessman’s son Eric Trump said: “Overall revenues in 2015 have increased 7.4 per cent compared to 2014, in spite of the economic downturn experienced in the North East of Scotland due to the collapse of the oil prices with over 100,000 redundancies in the oil and gas industry affecting every sector in the region.

“Looking forward, services will continue to expand and develop, with further capital investment planned.

“The property now offers pay-and-play golf and membership opportunities which will provide a robust business model going forward and help maintain revenue amid the current economic downturn.”

In his report for Turnberry, Mr Trump said: “Turnover for the resort has reduced by 13 per cent from 2014 to 2015, as a result of the closure of the hotel and Ailsa course during the final quarter of 2015.

“Upon completion of the construction project, it is expected that revenue will increase as the property is re-established as an industry leading resort.

“The directors believe that the resort will return to profitability in the short to medium term.”

Last month, a financial watchdog in the US called for the accounts of Trump’s two Scots golf resorts to be investigated amid allegations of “significant, widespread discrepancies”.

They claimed Trump had broken the Ethics in Government Act because of inconsistencies in the incomes reported at Turnberry in Ayrshire and the Menie Estate in Aberdeenshire.

The American Democracy Legal Fund have contacted the Department of Justice calling for an inquiry.

Accounts filed with the federal election commission in the States said Trump had an income of £3.3million from Menie.

But papers at Companies House in the UK show he made a loss of £1.1million on the resort in the year to December 2014.

Trump’s Turnberry resort told the commission his income was £15.5million - but Companies House showed a £3.6million loss for 2014.

Brad Woodhouse of ADLF said there were “significant, widespread discrepancies” and “the numbers do not add up”.

Trump has said that the amounts he listed on his US filings were “projected future income.”

’Like’ The Scotsman on Facebook for regular updates

DOWNLOAD THE SCOTSMAN APP ON ITUNES OR GOOGLE PLAY