Come for the crime, stay for the petting zoo

tmpnull.pngRunRun.es has a blockbuster piece on Tocorón Prison in Aragua State, quickly becoming the epicenter of #PranNation.

Run by a business savvy “Pran” (prison gang leader) with a growth vision, Tocorón has been on a building frenzy of late, blurring the lines between vacation resort and jail. Charmingly, the jail has become the one place in the area where you can buy scarce basic goods safely and without queues, though of course at inflated prices.

Then you have restaurants, pools, a cock-fighting rink, a bank, a jungle gym for the kiddies, a newly refurbished nightclub and everyone’s favorite…a petting zoo.

Yes, really.

Reading this, it struck me that what sets Prans apart from other businessmen in Venezuela is that instead of instantly looking for ways to shield their assets abroad, they actually reinvest in their business. Because make no mistake, this is what this is: cash flush local prans ploughing the profits from last week’s operations into next week’s amenities. Maybe it’s due to the peculiar form of “financial repression” being locked up inside your own little fiefdom creates. Either way, in Venezuela only PranNation reinvests: nobody else does that!

Read the whole thing.

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