Sun, Dec 21, 2014
A A A
Welcome Guest
Free Trial RSS
Get FREE trial access to our award winning publications
Industry Updates

Tony Blair hired as a speaker by hedge fund Lansdowne Partners

Tuesday, January 26, 2010
Opalesque Industry Update: Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair is to receive $325,000 from a major London-based hedge fund.

He is to deliver four exclusive speeches this year to executives and staff of Lansdowne Partners on geopolitical developments, various media reports said yesterday.

Sky’s Mark Kleinman said that the arrangement could possibly be extended to a more permanent advisory role if things go smoothly.

The Independent said that the deal between Blair and Lansdowne came as a surprise as the company’s chairman, Paul Ruddock, had donated over $650,000 to the opposition, the Conservative Party.

A report by Financial Advice said that Blair’s acceptance of an advisory role with Lansdowne had inadvertently placed the UK government in a very difficult position, as indeed, the ruling Labour Party is adamant that the UK financial sector needs to pay for the ongoing economic turmoil in the UK.

Blair has now amassed a multi-million pound fortune since he left the position of prime minister in June 2007 using many of the contacts which he built up during his time at the head of the UK government, the report said.

The former prime minister's spokesman declined to comment on his fees, although he is reported to earn as much as £180,000 (US$292,000) for 90 minutes for his thoughts on geopolitical matters in countries from Spain to the Philippines. That works out at about £2,000 a minute. "He [Blair] remains one of the most popular speakers around the world," the spokesman told The Guardian.

The announcement also came days before the former Labour Party leader is due to appear before an inquiry into the Iraq war. On Friday, in the Queen Elizabeth conference centre in London, he will be asked to go through the facts once again, as the star witness at Sir John Chilcot's inquiry into the Iraq war, reportedThe Scotsman.

For about a week every month Blair is in Jerusalem, working as Middle East envoy.

According to the Financial Times, Lansdowne has been known to hire senior former politicians, including former prime ministers and U.S. senators, to give its staff exclusive talks.

Lansdowne is Europe's fourth largest hedge fund. It is believed to have made hundreds of millions of pounds during the 2008 banking crisis from short-selling shares in the financial services industry, said The Independent.

The Mayfair-based hedge fund is believed to have raked in close to £100m after holding on its position in Northern Rock for two years, initially taking in losses, before the bet paid out by the time the bank was nationalized. It also profited by betting on the fall of Barclay’s shares last year, and shorted Allied Irish Bank as well as many in the UK insurance sector.

As at June 2009, Lansdowne ran $11.9bn in assets, reported Reuters.

Not surprisingly, Lansdowne Global Financials Fund was one of the major winners in the EuroHedge Awards held in London last Sunday. Lansdowne won the Long Term Performance Award based on the best risk-adjusted returns by hedge funds over a five-year period. – written by PD –


Bg

What do you think?

   Use "anonymous" as my name    |   Alert me via email on new comments   |   
Today's Exclusives Today's Other Voices More Exclusives
Previous Opalesque Exclusives                                  
More Other Voices
Previous Other Voices                                               
Access Alternative Market Briefing


  • Top Forwarded
  • Top Tracked
  • Top Searched
  1. Investing - Big hedge funds win again on PetSmart, Riverbed, RBS sells real estate loans to hedge fund Cerberus, Talisman energy speculation: Which hedge funds could benefit?[more]

    Big hedge funds win again on PetSmart, Riverbed From CNBC.com: Another week, another set of wins for activist investors. On Sunday, pet supply retailer PetSmart agreed to the largest leveraged buyout of the year at $8.7 billion. Hedge fund firm JANA Partners had been pushing for a sale a

  2. Outlook - Hedge fund manager who remembers 1998 rout says prepare for pain, Bond guru Bill Gross predicts U.S. economic growth to dip to 2%[more]

    Hedge fund manager who remembers 1998 rout says prepare for pain From Bloomberg.com: Stephen Jen landed in Hong Kong in early January 1997 as Morgan Stanley’s newly minted exchange-rate strategist for Asia. He was soon working around the clock when investors began targeting the region’s

  3. Investing - Hedge funds get boost from healthcare in 2014, Paulson & Co takes stake in Salix on heels of inventory issues[more]

    Hedge funds get boost from healthcare in 2014 From Valuewalk.com: The healthcare sector started the year on a turbulent note, as stocks of many major biotechnology companies were battered. However, most of the players in this sector have bounced back. The BarclayHedge Healthcare & Biotec

  4. Opalesque Exclusive: U.S. legal receivables fund launched in August[more]

    Benedicte Gravrand, Opalesque Geneva for New Managers: Investing in asset-backed receivables is a strategy that has been an integral part of the alternative investment space within the overall fixed income asset c

  5. Comment - High fees and low performance hit hedge funds[more]

    From FT.com: Disenchantment over high fees and lackluster performance may finally be turning the tide against hedge funds, fresh data suggest. Despite generally weak returns since the global financial crisis, hedge funds have enjoyed positive net inflows every year since 2010. This helped assets und