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Desert Diary Bush, Bitcoin and banter in Abu Dhabi and Ironmen on the beaches in Dubai

Investor's Notebook

Originally published February 2018. 

The UAE’s appetite for attracting the great and the good (and sometimes the bad and the ugly) remains impressive. This week, Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates, hosted the first Milken Institute MENA Summit, and what a gathering it was. Milken, known in a former life as the junk bond king, can call on pretty much anyone to appear at these gatherings, which discuss political, business and societal issues, ranging from Brexit, women in the workplace, prosperity, Africa, blockchain, health technology, philanthropy… the list is long. I was intrigued to hear Brexit views from 3 prominent UK businessmen, which, essentially, focused on the lack of cohesive leadership from the government which could lead to a much greater economic threat to the economy, a far left Corbyn election victory. Equally interesting was the conversation with Thomas Barrack, founder of Colony Northstar and close friend of US President Trump. He described a man who thought a lot more strategically than most would imagine, who ruled by chaos and whose balls to run for President in order to change what he saw as “Bad Business America” surprised no one who really knows him. We came away having warmed slightly to the leader of the free world, knowing a little more about him than many.

Investor's Notebook

About Edward Atkinson

Edward Atkinson

Ed has lived in UAE since 2010, owning and running the Padjet Consultancy. He has advised the Abu Dhabi National Energy Company (TAQA) and Dubai Expo 2020 on renewable energy and sustainability. Ed also acts on behalf of select companies and individuals raising capital from Sovereign Wealth Funds, Family Offices and other investment vehicles through his extensive network built up over the past 8 years. Prior to moving to UAE, Ed worked in the City of London. He has acted as Executive Producer and helped finance a number of film and television projects, including Last Orders, starring Michael Caine, Helen Mirren, Tom Courteney, Bob Hoskins and Ray Winstone. An avid cricket, rugby and golf fan, Ed can often be found exploring hitherto undiscovered areas of the UAE's excellent courses.

Articles by Edward Atkinson

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