Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Baroness Bitcoin of Arabia

From City AM:

Baroness Bitcoin of Arabia: Michelle Mone and Douglas Barrowman on their delve into the world of cryptocurrency
Baroness Michelle Mone, and her billionaire property mogul partner Douglas Barrowman, this morning open the sale of two 40-storey residential towers spanning 2.4m square feet in Dubai.

Building a huge complex in the Emirates isn’t itself remarkable the Middle Eastern playground for the rich is peppered with luxury apartments, largely paid for in state-owned petrodollars over the last two decades.

What makes it interesting is that the apartments are up for sale in bitcoin, the cryptocurrency de jour, favoured by techies and participants of the dark web, up over 400 per cent in value this year.

When in Duabi...
I meet the Scottish partners, just one of 32 international journalists invited to the Dorchester Hotel over 48 hours, to better understand a move which, I suggest to the pair, will be met with due scepticism.

“Everyone thinks the bitcoin bit is the main part,” says Mone, “but it’s the development. It’s the global launch of Aston Plaza. There are 1,113 apartments, and there’s a shopping mall, and it’s a £250m development, which is pretty big.”

I suggest that Dubai, and the UAE as a whole, is notorious for empty and unfinished property projects valued at $81bn have been put on hold as leaders across the region adjust to prolonged low oil prices, according to the Middle East Economic Digest. It seems offbeat to build yet another one, I add....MORE