Fortera invests €200M in Seixal
The Israeli real estate developer Fortera is to invest €200 million on property developments in the Lisbon south bank estuary town of Seixal.
The developer is at the centre of Operation Babel – a corruption scandal involving alleged under-the-table payments in exchange for planning permission for developments in Greater Porto where it has investments of €750 million tied up in 20 projects.
Fortera, which is headquartered in Gaia, Porto, is putting the sandal firmly behind it with plans to expand its investments to the south of Portugal with its ‘Alive’ housing concept, starting in Greater Lisbon.
“We are preparing to take our ‘Alive’ community housing development concept to Lisbon’s south bank because we believe that this is the ideal form to live. Bringing this innovative and disruptive real estate project to Portugal is incredible and we want each ‘Alive’ development to have spaces for socialising such a barbecue areas, spaces where people can get together around a fire, integrated gardens, and a co-working space”, states the company in a communiqué.
Elad Dror was quizzed by investigative police last month and released on a €1 million bail payment. He stepped down as CEO of Fortera after the scandal broke and was replaced by Pedro Ferreira, who told the business daily Negócios that Fortera would “continue to study projects to develop its business in the south of Portugal.
“We are retaining our short to long-term strategic expansion plan in the Lisbon Metropolitan Area said the new Fortera CEO which plans to invest €200 million in the Greater Lisbon region.
After the first announcement that the project would launch at the end of 2023, with completion slated for 2026, the new CEO said he preferred not to commit to specific dates, simply saying: “The investment will be gradual and in line with the potential and evolution of the local and national market”.
The goal for Lisbon south bank (at Seixal) is “a commercial expansion project to create a new business district”.
The former founder and ex-CEO of Fortera, Elad Dror was one of six persons arrested by Portugal’s judicial police PJ during Operation Babel which investigated real estate projects worth around €300 million.
A second entrepreneur was also arrested over Operation Vortex which involved the former Mayor of Espinho, Miguel Reis who was placed in police custody.
Operation Babel is centred around the evasion of regulations governing urban planning licences in favour of developers such as Fortera and the offer and acceptance of “sweeteners of a pecuniary nature” (I.e, back-handers), according to the PJ in a communiqué.