Posted by: Editor on Dec 14, 2006 – 01:24 PM
newsandinfo Former competitors Old Bahama Bay and the Ginn Club will merge for an undisclosed amount, after three years of aggressive negotiations.
According to an address from Prime Minister Perry Christie, the deal will boost the Ginn investment on the West End of Grand Bahama past the $5 million mark.
Yesterday was the first official acknowledgment that Ginn and Old Bahama Bay had been in negotiations, though speculations in business circles had been brewing nearly a year.
Bob Kramm, General Manager and Chief Operating Officer of the Old Bahama Bay development, told the Guardian yesterday that Ginn Clubs & Resorts and the principals of Old Bahama Bay “have agreed in general terms”, and are waiting for the completion of a heads of agreement.
“We’re kind of in the waiting mode,” Mr Kramm said. “They have attorneys, we have attorneys, and the attorneys have a responsibility to make sure the deal is clear.
“Because the buyer and seller have agreed, it’s just a matter of getting it done.”
Mr Kramm added that he saw no obstacles to the completion of the deal he expects to be finalized sometime in January.
“The question that they have to answer is: ‘Do they see Old Bahama Bay blended with the Ginn Sur Mer project, or do they see it separate from that?” Mr Kramm offered an analogy to the One & Only Ocean Club and Atlantis, although he expressed his opinion that Ginn do away with the Old Bahama Bay brand.
“I think it will immediately translate into more business,” he said.
Mr Kramm expressed his pleasure that Ginn was the interested buyer. “I like their idea of resort, real estate lifestyle. That’s a more permanent, more stable business plan than just hotels … or just real estate because you stand on more legs.”
Employees at Old Bahama Bay have expressed concern about job security with the pending merger.
One, named Sherry, who wished to be identified only by her first name, said she had bounced from job to job, ever since the Jack Tar resort pulled out of West End in 1988.
“I don’t know what’s going on with … Ginn,” she said. “I just hope I have a job.”
Mr Kramm said, “A lot of our employees think that we’re holding back or we’re not telling something, but the facts are it takes a while to process legally.”
Demonstrating commitment to the community, Bobby Ginn, founder and CEO of Ginn Clubs & Resorts, donated $3 million to start the Ginn Foundation. The fund is designed to help clean up and maintain the West End settlement.
Source: The Nassau Guardian