THE Capitalist was amused to see that the statement made on behalf of the Tchenguiz brothers following their release without charge on Wednesday night made it clear the pair are “free to travel”.
Why so critical that the property tycoons, who were arrested by the Serious Fraud Office and held for 12 hours in connection with the collapse of Icelandic bank Kaupthing on Tuesday, are able to leave the country?
Because – as regular readers of this column will know – the brothers were due to host a party on board their yacht the Veni Vidi Vici yesterday evening, and the entire MIPIM property convention in Cannes was on tenterhooks to see whether the bash would go ahead.
Happily, the brothers didn’t let their ordeal dampen their enthusiasm for hedonism on a grand scale, and they moved swiftly to reassure guests that the party was very much still on. An email sent to guests yesterday afternoon read: “We still look forward to seeing you aboard Veni, Vidi, Vici from 8pm this evening. See you later!”
So the party circuit at Cannes is now back in full swing, following Tuesday’s beachfront event co-hosted by Nicholas Cowell, brother of media mogul Simon Cowell, and Wednesday’s Ooh La La party at the Da Da Da club, attended by “wealthy Russians and their beautiful accoutrements”, where bottles of whisky were polished off in 10 minutes.
However, one camp that may have greeted the news that the Tchenguiz yacht party was back on with rather less enthusiasm is that of property consultants James Andrew, who hosted a rival party at the Majestic hotel last night that started at 7.30pm.
For James Andrew’s sake, The Capitalist hopes their high-powered guests from firms including DLA Piper, Barclays Wealth and law firm Quastel Midgen stayed longer than half an hour before dashing to the harbour to mingle with the Tchenguiz crew.
OH to be a fly on the wall at the next BSkyB meeting to discuss the bid from News Corporation, after adviser Simon Warshaw’s promotion at UBS to become joint head of investment banking.
Will fellow BSkyB adviser Simon Robey from Morgan Stanley, possibly the most well-connected M&A banker in London, give Warshaw his congratulations?
Or will he ignore his rival’s elevation, through concern that his own position in the London market may be under threat? The Capitalist waits with bated breath.
TO Victoria House in Bloomsbury for the Contemporary Art Society’s annual fundraising dinner, where 37 works by artists including Gavin Turk and the Chapman brothers were auctioned off to an audience of high-rolling City philanthropists.
Big-game guests spotted admiring the modern art included Lord Myners, the former City minister and former chairman of M&S (pictured right with his wife Lady Alison); investment banker Scott Mead; and Robert Bensoussan, co-founder of Sirius Equity and former chief executive of upmarket cobbler Jimmy Choo.
No word has yet reached The Capitalist on whether Bensoussan managed to help find a bidder for Jimmy Choo among the evening’s monied guests, following reports that the shoemaker’s latest private equity owner TowerBrook Capital is looking to sell or launch an IPO.
However, this column can reveal that the biggest bid of the night, £27,000, went on a piece by Jake and Dinos Chapman called My Brother Went To See Hell And All I Got Was This Lousy Souvenir.
Sadly, the City bidders are being coy about linking their names to the generous bids, which raised a total of £250,000 to support the UK’s artists, galleries and museums.
But let’s just say the beautiful home of Franck Petitgas, global co-head of investment banking at Morgan Stanley, will be made even more beautiful when he takes delivery of Fox on a Moonbeam Carpet by Brazilian artist Tonico Lemos Auad.