An Australian property tycoon has staved off a financial crisis that threatened the closure of the headquarters of Sydney’s Chabad-Lubavitch movement.
Harry Triguboff, a longstanding benefactor of the ultra-Orthodox organization, purchased two Chabad buildings in Bondi Dec. 20 for a reported $6 million, enabling the beleaguered organization to pay off debts that threatened to cripple its ability to operate across Sydney.
Triguboff said it is “very important” that the Jewish education taught by Chabad continue in the city.
A relieved Pinchus Feldman, Chabad’s chief rabbi in New South Wales, wrote to members Dec. 21 saying the organization had avoided the “threat of receivership.” He said Triguboff’s “magnificent gesture” will ensure Chabad continue its work “for future generations.”
Feldman added: “This $6 million donation is one of the largest single donations ever to have been made to any Jewish Australian institution.”
Under the deal, the Feldman family will no longer control the buildings. Instead, Rabbi Dovid Slavin has become a director of the complex. Feldman will however remain the spiritual leader of the Chabad community.
The Chabad complex includes a synagogue, school, community kitchen and numerous other educational and outreach services.