Daily Archives: April 2, 2008

Tony Barber

What a pleasure it was to attend a conference on sovereign wealth funds today at the magnificent Palais d’Egmont in Brussels. There we were, listening to a prominent Kuwaiti banker as he described the activities of the Kuwaiti Investment Authority, often regarded as the oldest sovereign fund of them all.

All of a sudden, a French participant livened things up by asking why the Kuwaitis, when they set up shop back in the 1950s, had chosen London rather than some other foreign city as their base. Smooth as silk, the Kuwaiti replied that, well, after all, as a top banker you needed to be in a city “where you can have some fun … not like Frankfurt, for example.” Read more