Facebook’s money, Heathrow’s expansion and Platini’s arrest

Planet Business: No shortage of ambition

Rising sun: A computer generated image of what Heathrow might look like in  2050, if Earth makes it that far. Photograph: handout via AFP / Getty Images

Rising sun: A computer generated image of what Heathrow might look like in 2050, if Earth makes it that far. Photograph: handout via AFP / Getty Images

 

 

Image of the week: Heathrow 2050

Welcome to Heathrow City, please have your passports ready for inspection. This computer generated image released by Heathrow airport shows what its owners think the London airport will look like in 30 years’ time, following the completion of a third runway and new terminals. The controversial third runway, which is the strip off to the left of the picture (to the northwest of the rest of Heathrow), will require the “rerouting” of rivers and roads and is generally not seen as the most environmentally-friendly project in the potted history of humanity. The landing strip is expected to be open from 2026, with another 24 years apparently required for all the planned capacity extensions to get up and running. A 12-week consultation opened to the public this week, with final plans to be put to planning inspectors in 2020. Climate crisis-related despair is not pictured. Photograph: AFP / Getty Images.

Michel Platini after being freed, outside the French police financial crimes office, June 19th, 2019. Photograph: AP/ Francois Mori
Michel Platini after being freed, outside the French police financial crimes office, June 19th, 2019. Photograph: AP/ Francois Mori

In numbers: Qatar hero

9

Years since Fifa announced a totally normal and above board decision for the 2022 World Cup to be held in Qatar, with the help of a vote from Michel Platini, the former French captain who was at the time president of European football body, Uefa.

2

Years since Parquet National Financier, France’s serious financial crime organisation, opened an investigation into the business. This week, Platini was arrested as part of the case.

2 million

Payment in Swiss francs (about €1.8 million) that former Fifa president Sepp Blatter made to Platini in 2011 without a written contract, which led to both being banned from “football-related activities” until 2023. The two men claimed it was for services Platini had provided nine or more years earlier.

Patrick Drahi, new owner of Sotheby’s. Photograph: Epa/Jeremy Lempin
Patrick Drahi, new owner of Sotheby’s. Photograph: Epa/Jeremy Lempin

Getting to know: Patrick Drahi

Patrick Drahi is the French telecoms billionaire who isn’t majority Eir owner, Xavier Niel. The Switzerland residing French-Israeli businessman, who also has Portuguese citizenship, is the founder-controller of Netherlands-based telecoms giant Altice and also owns Portugal Telecom. But he’s in the headlines this week for another reason: he’s going to buy Sotheby’s. Casablanca-born Drahi (55) has raised his hand to acquire the NYSE-listed auction house, first established in 1744, in a deal that offers a 61 per cent premium to its stock’s closing price last Friday and values the company at $3.7 billion (€3.3bn). “Sotheby’s is one of the most elegant and aspirational brands in the world,” said Drahi. Well, you know how it is, you dabble in art collection, pick up a few pieces for your property portfolio, and before long, you might as well buy the whole gaffe.

Possibility of paying with Facebook’s Libra currency. Photograph: EPA/Luong Thai Linh
Possibility of paying with Facebook’s Libra currency. Photograph: EPA/Luong Thai Linh

The list: Libra signatories

Never knowingly underambitious Facebook has set its sights on the world of global finance via its new cryptocurrency, which it is calling libra – best known until now as the seventh sign of the zodiac. Some 28 companies and organisations have signed up to the digital currency. So who’s in?

1. Uber and Lyft. Forget banks and taxis: why not hail a ride courtesy of Mark Zuckerberg’s money-spinning money replacement?

2. Spotify. The audio streamer will also be part of the Libra Association, the Switzerland-headquartered organisation that will manage the whole thing.

3. Vodafone. Telecoms giants already know very well the value of reaching massive markets that don’t have traditional banking facilities. Vodafone calls this “digital and financial inclusion”.

4. Visa and Mastercard. Better to join up and keep a close eye on what could one day be the competition, rather than let a potentially pesky disrupter-type beat you over the head with its blockchain.

5. PayPal. Yes, it will also have a seat at this mysterious table, thank you very much.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.