The last Mediterranean winter storm has moved on, and a spring breeze is now wafting through the French Riviera city of Cannes. On a hill above the Côte d’Azur playground for the rich and famous, the Lebanese-French businessman and shipbuilding magnate, Iskandar Safa has built his office – a one story building, which also houses a part of his art dealership. Two curators belong to the 120-man team which manages his 1350 hectare property.
But these days, Mr. Safa is hardly concerned about his art business – not to mention his stud farm or golf course. Even real estate projects have lost their luster. It’s Germany that is on his mind.
On the German coast between the North Sea port of Emden, near the Dutch border, and the Baltic port of Wolgast, near the Polish border, Mr. Safa owns three ship-building yards. There, he builds mega-yachts and naval ships, and although his business building luxury boats for the super-rich is going strong, his naval manufacturing business is currently a cause for concern. As it stands, the German government is seeking to exclude him from their next big project.