HHQ Ventures

Profile: HHQ Ventures

1- Name of NGO:

HHQ Ventures

2- Brief & Mission:

HHQ Ventures operates as a consultancy firm, specializing in providing services encompassing advocacy, regulatory analysis, market strategy, business development, and political strategy. 

It has come to light that the lobbying entity HHQ is implicated in sportswashing the Saudi government’s violations of human rights through its representation of Saudi government-affiliated LIV Golf. Notably, HHQ Ventures has potentially breached U.S. regulations by not registering their activities on behalf of LIV Golf with the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) as mandated by the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA). Furthermore, HHQ Ventures has omitted acknowledging their role in advocating for a foreign entity in their Lobbying Disclosure Act (LDA) submissions to the U.S. Congress.

3- Bias, Agenda & Motivation:

HQQ Ventures duly enrolled themselves as lobbyists for LIV Golf, Inc. in accordance with the Lobbying Disclosure Act (LDA) on August 1, 2022. However, they neglected to register as foreign agents under FARA, thus failing to comply with the legal requirement. This omission has led to the misleading of Congress, the Biden administration, and the American public. HHQ Ventures has refrained from acknowledging the foreign interests they represent and has neglected to provide an accurate account of their activities that benefit these foreign interests, as mandated by law.

Employing sportswashing as a deliberate tactic, Saudi Arabia and Crown Prince MBS have been vigorously attempting to divert attention away from MBS’s personal involvement in grave human rights violations within the country, including the infamous murder of Jamal Khashoggi. This strategy is pursued without concern for costs or financial gains. Part of this maneuver involves the establishment of LIV Golf in 2021 under the auspices of the Saudi PIF. 

This approach extends further to encompass the acquisition of entities such as the English Premier League’s Newcastle United Football Club, renowned soccer figures like Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema, sponsorships within Formula 1, exclusive events and rights for World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE), engagement in eSports, and a range of other global assets within the realm of sports and entertainment.

4- Links to Governments/Political Agenda:

Considering the Saudi government’s ownership and authority over LIV Golf, HHQ’s lobbying efforts on behalf of LIV Golf effectively align with the Saudi government’s interests. This scenario highlights the unmistakable connection between the Saudi Arabian government monarchy and the firm.

5- Sources of Funding:

HHQ Ventures secures a quarterly revenue of $140,000 from LIV Golf, with these funds originating from the Saudi government’s Public Investment Fund (PIF), presided over by Crown Prince Mohamed bin Salman (MBS) in his capacity as Chairman.

6- Activities:

Lobbying company advocated for the interests of Saudi-owned LIV Golf within the United States. In this process, significant information regarding Saudi Arabia’s unlawful and destabilizing actions has been omitted, effectively participating in sportswashing to improve Saudi Arabia’s human rights image. LIV Golf itself is widely perceived as commercially unviable, seemingly established solely to either compete with or acquire PGA Tours and thereby attain control over global golf. Through this acquisition strategy, the Saudi government and its representatives, including HHQ Ventures, intend to shape public sentiment in favor of the government, divert attention from its abuses, and influence players, business figures, and politicians to adopt a sympathetic stance and refrain from discussing its transgressions.

 

7- NGO Leadership:

Hamilton Bloom serves as the Vice-President, while Sakshi Mahajan holds the role of Director of Research and Communication at HHQ.

.8- Controversy:

HHQ Ventures seemingly violated its ethical responsibilities regarding human rights by participating in and profiting from Saudi Arabia’s violations. According to the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, enterprises are obliged to refrain from causing or assisting negative human rights consequences through their actions, and they are also mandated to avert or alleviate such consequences connected directly to their operations, goods, or services due to their business connections, even if they haven’t actively contributed to these outcomes.

9- Contact Details:

10- Classification/Blacklist:

Engaging in lobbying activities for governments, government bodies, government-backed investment funds, or individuals such as those within the Saudi Arabian administration accountable for serious offenses, including war crimes, torture, arbitrary detentions, and extrajudicial executions, inherently aids and abets these wrongdoings. Consequently, the firm’s connections with the KSA government have resulted in its classification on a blacklist.

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