REVEALED: Luxury hotel group Ashford Inc. is biggest beneficiary of PPP with $59MILLION after exploiting loophole to net 6 times the max payout

  • Ashford Inc., a hospitality real estate business with several subsidiaries, has already received $30million in loans from the US Paycheck Protection Program 
  • This is the biggest sum received by any of the more than 100 public company disclosures related to these loans, according to analysis by Wall Street Journal 
  • The group’s subsidiaries also took home $12.8 million in loans and subsidiaries of affiliate company Braemar Hotels & Resorts have been granted $15.8 million 
  • This comes as CEO and chairman Monty Bennett and other major shareholders pocketed millions in preferred dividends 
  • The PPP was set up by the government to help small businesses pay workers and bills but many large firms have claimed millions through loopholes 
  • The program has a $10million and 500-staff limit but large firms such as Ashford with its 7,000-plus workforce have spread claims over multiple subsidiaries 
  • Subsidiary Ashford Hospitality Trust owns luxury properties including the Marriott Beverly Hills and the Ritz Carlton in Atlanta 
  • In March, Bennett said the Trust didn’t have money to cover its debt payments
  • Brookfield Asset Management has slammed Bennett accusing him of committing a ‘fraudulent scheme’ and ‘suspect insider transactions’

The luxury hotel group that owns Marriott Beverly Hills and the Ritz Carlton in Atlanta and is ran by a major Donald Trump donor has been named as the biggest beneficiary of the coronavirus loan program receiving a staggering $59million intended for small firms, while its boss has pocketed millions in dividends during the pandemic.

Ashford Inc., a hospitality real estate business with several subsidiaries, has already received $30million in loans from the US Paycheck Protection Program set up by the federal government to help small businesses keep paying their workers and bills.

This is the biggest sum received by any public company from these loans and is around eight times the average amount granted to firms, according to analysis by the Wall Street Journal.

Public filings show that the group’s subsidiaries also took home $12.8 million in loans and subsidiaries of affiliate company Braemar Hotels & Resorts have been granted $15.8 million.

This comes as CEO and chairman Monty Bennett, known for keeping exotic and endangered animals on his Dallas ranch, and other major shareholders including his father, have reportedly pocketed millions of dollars in preferred dividends as the coronavirus pandemic wages on.

Bennett is a major Trump donor, giving money to his race for the White House back in 2016 and donating $150,000 in the last six months for his reelection campaign, according to Federal Election Commission records.

A lender for subsidiary Ashford Hospitality Trust has slammed Bennett accusing him of committing a ‘fraudulent scheme’ and ‘suspect insider transactions’.