Harvey Hernandez fights back against Airbnb

Airbnb previously accused Herndandez of defrauding the short-term rental company

TRD MIAMI /
Jan.January 29, 2020 06:40 PM
Harvey Hernandez (Credit: Airbnb and iStock)

Harvey Hernandez (Credit: Airbnb and iStock)

Harvey Hernandez’s development group is striking back against Airbnb after the short-term rental company alleged he committed fraud and siphoned money out of an apartment-sharing concept.

NGD Homesharing, led by Miami developer Hernandez, alleges in a countersuit filed Friday in Miami-Dade Circuit Court that Airbnb was actually the one operating in bad faith and caused delays and setbacks in opening its projects by going “radio silent” in communication.

“This is a classic case of a big corporate player attempting to misuse its size and strong-armed legal tactics to improperly usurp an innovative business,” Michael G. Austin of McDermott Will & Emery, LLP, who is representing NGD, said in a statement.

The lawsuit alleges that Airbnb is attempting to misappropriate NGD’s confidential business information, trade secrets and proprietary business methods for the benefit of Airbnb.

The suit stems from a partnership between Hernadez’s development group and Airbnb to offer Airbnb-branded apartments. Airbnb claims it invested $11 million in the initiative.

But the local developer and the home-sharing giant are now locked in a heated legal battle.

Last week, Airbnb filed suit against NGD Homesharing in Northern California, claiming Newgard was supposed to open at least seven of projects in 2019, including one in Kissimmee, Florida. But Newgard failed to open a single project in 2019, according to the suit.

Furthermore, Airbnb alleges that Hernandez siphoned off $1 million of Airbnb’s investment into another one of his condo projects, Natiivo in Miami.

Airbnb alleges Hernandez and his company tried to disguise the investment as a loan by producing fraudulent and backdated documentation that showed Hernandez as the signatory on behalf of both borrower and lender.

Hernandez’s development group’s most recent lawsuit disputes that the loan was illegal. As the sole manager of NGD, Hernandez was allowed to make the $1 million loan without Airbnb’s consent or authorization under a previous agreement, Austin said in a statement.

Airbnb did not immediately return a request for comment.

In its suit, Airbnb demands the return of its $11 million investment and wants out of its contract.

It is not the first time Hernandez has faced major legal issues with his real estate developments.

In 2016, Hernandez’s development company was sued over a failed robotic car garage he installed at the luxury condo tower Brickell House in Miami. In September, a Miami-Dade County judge awarded the Brickell House condo association $40.6 million from the development group after the technology malfunctioned and left residents without a working garage.


Related Articles

arrow_forward_ios
Nine Island Avenue (Google Maps)

Construction firm alleges Venetian Islands condo association skipped out on $720K

Construction firm alleges Venetian Islands condo association skipped out on $720K
5350 Park with Armando Codina and Ana-Marie Codina

Codina Partners affiliate allegedly owes $3.6M for Downtown Doral condo construction: lawsuit

Codina Partners affiliate allegedly owes $3.6M for Downtown Doral condo construction: lawsuit
Lennar's Stuart Miller

Homestead homeowners association sues Lennar, alleges shoddy construction

Homestead homeowners association sues Lennar, alleges shoddy construction
Stephen Ross and a rendering of Rosemary Square (Getty, Related)

Security firm sues Related Cos. affiliate, alleging unpaid services at Rosemary Square

Security firm sues Related Cos. affiliate, alleging unpaid services at Rosemary Square
Shelborne South Beach

Shelborne South Beach unit owners lose appeal contesting $30M in assessments

Shelborne South Beach unit owners lose appeal contesting $30M in assessments
The appeals court \rejected Miami Beach’s petition to overturn a ruling that determined that the city’s exorbitant fines for short-term rental violators ran afoul of state law (Airbnb, iStock)

Miami Beach racks up another court loss over short-term rental enforcement

Miami Beach racks up another court loss over short-term rental enforcement
From left: Brian Kingston, Irving Padron and Merrick Park

Brookfield sues to evict Irving Padron’s Submarket Realty from Merrick Park

Brookfield sues to evict Irving Padron’s Submarket Realty from Merrick Park
Jay Parker and Mike Sales, with 801 Brickell Avenue (Credit: Google Maps)

TIAA sues Douglas Elliman over allegedly unpaid rent at Brickell high-rise

TIAA sues Douglas Elliman over allegedly unpaid rent at Brickell high-rise
arrow_forward_ios

The Deal's newsletters give you the latest scoops, fresh headlines, marketing data, and things to know within the industry.

Loading...