Isabel dos Santos e os diamantes das estrelas

Apesar de a filha do presidente de Angola ter comprado os direitos de publicação da Forbes para os países africanos de língua portuguesa, a revista norte-americana continuou a investigar os negócios da empresária. Na edição de Fevereiro, a Forbes conta como Isabel dos Santos adicionou um joalheiro suíço famoso entre as estrelas de Hollywood à sua carteira de negócios. O texto é assinado por Rafael Marques e Kerry Dolan.


Diamonds For Daddy’s Girl: How Angola’s Isabel Dos Santos Snared A Swiss Jeweler

By Rafael Marques de Morais with Kerry A. Dolan

Back in August FORBES detailedhow the richest woman in Africa, by the tender age of 40, had increased her net worth from zero to $3 billion: You have your father, the president of Angola, direct those who want to do business in the country to cut you in on their action. FORBES has learned, however, that Isabel dos Santos has added a more legitimate jewel to her crown: de Grisogono, a Swiss jeweler renowned among the Hollywood A-list for its extravagant, celebrity-studded parties in Cannes and Miami Beach and fans like Heidi Klum and Sharon Stone.

Newly uncovered documents show that a shell company called Victoria Holding Ltd. acquired 75% of de Grisogono in 2012 for more than $100 million through a subsidiary. The documents show that ownership of Victoria Holding Ltd. is evenly split between the Angolan state-owned diamond company, Sodiam, and a Dutch-registered company, Melbourne Investments. Dos Santos’ husband, Congolese businessman Sindika Dokolo, is listed as the sole beneficial owner of Melbourne Investments.

It is not clear whether Dokolo made any financial investment in Melbourne Investments or whether Melbourne contributed any cash to the purchase. Sodiam, as a state-owned company (its board, chair and CEO are all appointed by President Jose Eduardo dos Santos), is required to publicly disclose all its relevant ventures at home and abroad, but until now its partnership with Dokolo had remained a secret.

Sodiam, through its parent company, did not return calls to provide its side of the story. The chairman of de Grisogono said “no public funds or resources, namely from the Angolan State or Angolan State-owned companies, have been involved, directly or indirectly.” Dokolo has told the Portuguese press, “The mentioned investment … makes sense from a strategic point of view. …Any dollar that enters Switzerland or Europe is the object of an exhaustive verification process.” Perhaps, but it’s hard to figure out what the president’s daughter doesn’t have a stake in in Angola; even the publishing company that owns the right to license FORBES in Portuguese-speaking Africa, it turns out, is owned 70% by Isabel dos Santos, according to a press release from its co-owner, the Portuguese Zon Media. She had no comment for us.

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