Fox Business News is asking an important question.
How was it that HillStone, a newcomer in the business of home building, landed a massive and potentially lucrative contract to build 100,000 homes in war-torn Iraq?
The answer according to David Richter the President of Hill international is their new EVP James Biden, the younger brother of the SCHMOTUS, Joe Biden.
David Richter, the president of Hill International (HIL), a mid-sized outfit that manages construction projects, was speaking last year at a private meeting with investors when he was asked about the recent success of his newest subsidiary, HillStone International.take our poll - story continues below
Richter didn’t mince words. It really helps, he said, to have “the brother of the vice president as a partner,” according to a person who was present.
James has been the EVP of the company for two years and his “contacts” have allowed the company to get a HUGE federal contract for building homes in Iraq despite the fact the company does not have a track record in residential construction.
If the company’s projections are accurate, both Hill and Biden are on the verge of a huge payday, beneficiaries, some analysts believe, of James Biden’s connections to the Obama Administration through his older brother. ….And some analysts remain dubious about the completion of the Iraq project, including those at Sidoti & Company, which slashed earnings estimates on Friday. But if company officials are to be believed — and there’s good reason to believe them given Hill’s connections to the Obama Administration — Hill will be solidly profitable once the Iraq development gets underway. Company officials say the Iraq project is slated to generate $1.5 billion in revenues over the next three years, more than three times all the revenues Hill produced in 2011.
“I think these guys will come through,” said one former Hill executive who had worked on the development. “You have to realize that these guys are relentless businessmen and they have the right connections.”
And if the deal does happen, a chunk of that $1.5 billion will flow to the biggest connection Hill has to government: James Biden. Hill International owns a 51% stake in HillStone; a group of minority partners, including Biden, hold the rest. That means that the minority partners would split roughly $735 million, pocketing millions of dollars even after expenses are paid.
James Biden got the job despite the fact he has no business experience:
James Biden’s bio on the Hill website touts his “40 years of experience dealing with principals in business, political, legal and financial circles across the nation and internationally” that “enable him to understand the needs and perspectives of government, financial and development leaders to effectively negotiate and implement low-cost housing objectives both domestically and abroad.”
But the bio cites no specific business-related post that he has held in the past, though it says that at “the age of 22, (James) Biden was the finance chairman of his then 29-year-old brother’s bid for a U.S. Senate seat in Delaware and successfully enlisted the support of national unions, political leaders and financiers across the country.”
Also not disclosed is that he is a minority partner in HillStone, in line to earn significant sums of money if the project is completed, Richter conceded in an interview.
And James Biden might have his brother Joe to thank, at least according to Wall Street analysts who cover the company. In discussions with analysts, Hill International officials haven’t been bashful about pointing to their connections to the Obama Administration when explaining why they remain hopeful that even after months of delay they believe the Iraq project will begin, possibly as early as the end of the year.
“When asked about these topics, David Richter has said that the company has access to senior levels of government,” said one analyst.
A company with little experience in home construction gets a lucrative government contract to build homes in Iraq, and brags around town that the contract was received and will be fulfilled because of their great contacts with senior members of the government. If that isn’t an example of crony capitalism, I don’t know what is.
There is more to this Fox Business report which I urge you to read by clicking here.