Wednesday, 20 June 2018

50 luxury flats in Dubai have been sold for bitcoin — and one buyer bought 10

dubai roman logov unsplash
Dubai skyline.


  • Two UK entrepreneurs announced a $327 million property
    development in Dubai last year.
  • Some of the apartments are being sold in
  • Lingerie tycoon Michelle Mone and her billionaire
    partner Doug Barrowman are behind the project and told Business
    Insider that all 50 of the apartments so far offered in bitcoin
    have been sold.

LONDON — A batch of 50 Dubai luxury flats offered for sale in
bitcoin have all been snapped up.

Lingerie tycoon Michelle Mone and her billionaire partner Doug
announced plans last September for a $327 million (£235.7
million) property development in Dubai
that would see
apartments offered for sale in bitcoin.

Barrowman told Business Insider earlier this month: “We allocated
50 out of 1,300 developments. We’ve sold all out. Some bought
ones and twos, and one individual bought ten.”

Construction has begun at the site, located in Dubai’s Science
Park, and it is scheduled for completion in 2020. It is being
developed by Barrowman’s Dubai-registered firm Aston
Developments, part of the Knox Group, which manages a £1.5
billion portfolio of assets including commercial property.

Prices range from studio apartments for $130,000 — currently
about 15 bitcoins — to two-bedroom apartments priced at $380,000,
or about 45 bitcoins.

Michelle Mone & Doug Barrowman
Michelle Mone, left, and Doug


Michelle Mone told Business Insider that there were a “mixture”
of buyers but that “a lot” fit the stereotype of early bitcoin
devotees — young male programmers in t-shirts.

“Actually, the team got a relationship going with them as well,”
Mone said. “They would talk on the phone — they’re not just like
in their hoodies in the dark in the rooms.”

Mone and Barrowman discussed sales at their Dubai development
an interview to promote their latest project, Equi, a
cryptocurrency-powered investment platform.

“I like to see this crypto space being used to buy real-world
assets,” Barrowman said. “That’s the spirit of Equi as well. It’s
transcending the crypto space into the physical and real world.”

Mone said: “It was Doug’s passion and it was his baby because he
was frustrated being in the cryptocurrency world with nothing to
offer the community.”

Barrowman added: “We’re still getting lots of inquiries. We’ve
not released another batch. Particularly when bitcoin was riding
high in the charts. I think a lot of people were cashing out over
the Christmas period.”

The pair initially pledged to sell a total of 15o apartments from
the development in bitcoin, suggesting more batches will be
released in future.

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