- New Company boasts nominee for Secretary of State, Secretary of Defense as partners
- Pine Island Capital Partners touts leadership that is ““uniquely positioned to capitalize” on anticipated increase in defense spending
- Company began trading on NYSE just days after the 2020 election
In the latest episode, Peter Schweizer discusses the way a new company is touting its connections to the Biden administration as a way to attract investors.
There’s a new company on the New York Stock Exchange. It’s small, but when it comes to political connections in Washington DC, you’re not going to believe the relationships they have!
On November 18th of this year, a new company was listed on the New York Stock Exchange. It’s called Pine Island Acquisitions. It’s a small company by most measures, but it’s a mighty company when it comes to political connections in Washington DC.
Pine Island Acquisition is an offshoot of something called Pine Island Capitol, that works in the financial sector, and primarily focuses on national security related companies in the defense space[i].
It was launched by a couple of individuals who are politically connected, and they gathered friends and acquaintances – many of them at the highest levels of Washington politics.
This is a company that openly touts its relationship with Joe Biden. One partner is Tony Blinken, who is Biden’s nominee for the Secretary of State. And one of it’s DC partners, General Lloyd Austin, is the nominee for the Secretary of Defense. So, you have two advisors from this small company that are going to be in Joe Biden’s cabinet.
Now, in the literature that it gave to potential investors, Pine Island talks about its leadership team that has “extensive access” in Washington DC – particularly in the defense sector[ii].
According to its pre-IPO filing published in September, Pine Island laid out those connections, and talked about how it was “uniquely positioned to capitalize”. And, boy, is it! When you’ve got the ear of the incoming Secretary of State, and of the incoming Secretary of Defense, as well as the legions of other ties that you have on Capitol Hill, it doesn’t get much better than that.
Now, Pine Island Capitol itself has been developing a number of businesses, all in the defense space[iii]. In April of this year, they purchased a stake in a Maine-based metal fabricator that markets itself to defense and aerospace industries[iv]. In July, they purchased something called “Meggitt Training Systems,” which provides weapons training to the military and law enforcement[v].
Georgia-based “Meggitt” recently rebranded itself as InVeris Training Systems[vi], and appointed another former Senator, Saxby Chambliss, as a partner in Pine Island, as its new chairmen[vii].
Recently, two Democratic members of Congress wrote a strongly-worded letter complaining about what’s happening to America’s defense budget[viii]. They, in general, don’t like larger defense budgets, but more to the point: they were concerned about the fact that this revolving door exists in Washington DC; where people that have been in public service – whether in the military or on Capitol Hill – end up leaving those posts, using their relationships to benefit defense contractors and other private equity firms that are trying to profit from those relationships.
Their criticism is legitimate, and ought to be listened.
We now have a new administration in Washington DC, but what we can’t do is return to business as usual. Individuals who are engaged in public service should not be cashing in, and we certainly should not have members of the Cabinet – at the highest levels of government – cashing in on private equity deals because they happen to be entrusted with the positions of Secretary of State and Secretary of Defense.
This is Peter Schweizer, and thanks for joining us on The Drill Down. For more information, you can find us on social media, or you can go to drilldowntv.com.