Properties tied to New York hotel mogul Sam Chang secured millions of dollars in government aid that was intended to help small businesses impacted by the coronavirus.
At least eight companies controlled by Chang nabbed between $2.8 million and $7 million in small business loans, CNBC reported. Chang founded the McSam Hotel Group, which made its name developing budget hotels along Manhattan’s West Side.
Last year, Chang — who has claimed previously that he’s worth $200 million — said he would retire to focus on the obscure hobby of pigeon racing.
Most of the loans went to limited liability companies tied to single properties owned by Chang, according to CNBC. These properties included a TownePlace Suites by Marriott in Manhattan, a Holiday Inn near John F. Kennedy Airport in Queens, and a Radisson in Grand Island, New York.
A McSam spokesperson told CNBC that the loans were used to help retain employees at some of its hotels
“A number of these sites provided accommodations for health care professionals and others working for Covid-related purposes,” according to the spokesperson. “The PPP loans enabled the hotels to retain much of their workforces for a longer period of time and to continue operating despite extraordinary drops in guests and revenue.”
More than 660,000 businesses have been approved for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), run by the Treasury Department and the Small Business Administration, with both large and small companies receiving money.
A number of high-profile New York real estate developers secured PPP loans, including Extell Development, Pyramid Management Group and Thor Equities.
[CNBC] — Keith Larsen