Joseph Jackson, father of late pop king Michael Jackson, has pulled out of a massive entertainment complex in Vietnam where he signed a deal to be involved in the construction of a major hotel last year.
His withdrawal from the development of the hotel which is part of the Happy Land project, a Disneyland-inspired amusement park, was posted on his official website in January, and confirmed Wednesday by Phan Thi Phuong Thao, board chairwoman of its developer Khang Thong Group.
The website said that Jackson decided not to proceed with any further investment or involvement in the project after “careful due diligence and discussions with his wife, family and advisers.”
He believed in the growth potential of Vietnam and would return to it for new opportunities soon, the website reads.
Meanwhile, Thao told the Saigon Times Online newspaper that Jackson signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Khang Thong in February last year to advise and help it find investors for the development of a five-star, 1,000-room hotel inside the complex.
The man has so far recommended two US investors to Khang Thong but no deals have been clinched between them, the chairwoman added.
An American manager, former boxer and former musician, the 82-year-old man is best known as the father of American entertainers Michael Jackson and Janet Jackson, and the creator and manager of The Jackson 5, a Motown group comprising several of his children.
Happy Land, developed on a 338ha area in the Mekong Delta province of Long An, is estimated to cost US$2 billion over three years.
Inspired by the well-known Disneyland Park, the Vietnamese complex will include a theme park that costs $600 million, a 3.7 km boardwalk, a shopping center, 3-5 star hotels, water parks, studios, indoor and outdoor theaters, restaurants, a floating market, and other facilities.
The project site along the Vam Co Dong River was once meant for a large-scale industrial park but Khang Thong then switched to a tourist construction plan following environmental concerns.