Monday, April 11, 2022

Saudi Crown Prince Funds Kushner, Mnuchin PEUs

The Saudi Public Investment Fund, controlled by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, invested $2 billion in Jared Kushner's new private equity firm six months after Kushner left the White House.

The fund's screening committee voted unanimously against investing in Kushner's Affinity Fund, citing the "inexperience" of its management, an asset management fee that "seems excessive," and the fact that due diligence found the firm's operations "unsatisfactory in all aspects." 

At the same time, the screening committee endorsed the fund's $1 billion investment with former Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin's new Liberty Strategic Capital.

"Ethics experts say that such a deal creates the appearance of potential payback for Mr. Kushner's actions in the White House — or of a bid for future favor if Mr. Trump seeks and wins another presidential term in 2024." 

Politicians Red and Blue love PEU (private equity underwriters) and increasingly, more are one.  Mnuchin and Kushner served the PEU class in office.  PEU service facilitated their return as greed and leverage boys.  

“Affinity, like many other top investment firms, is proud to have PIF and other leading organizations that have careful screening criteria, as investors.”

The Prince of Death supports the Lords of Greed.  No surprise. 

Update 5-16-22:  Former golf great Greg Norman said in a response to the Crown Prince ordered killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi at a media day for his Saudi-backed LIV Golf’s inaugural event in London next month:

"Look, we’ve all made mistakes and you just want to learn from those mistakes and how you can correct them going forward."

Part of rectifying a mistake is accepting responsibility and taking accountability for one's action.  The Prince of Thuggery has done nothing in that regard.  If Greg Norman has an inside information about the murder he should inform authorities. 

Update 6-6-22:  The Shark went name calling golfers who chose not to affiliate with a Saudi backed golf tour.  Greg Norman called Jack Nicklaus a "hypocrite" and.Rory McIlory "brainwashed".

Greg Norman, the public face of the breakaway LIV Golf series (sponsored by Saudi Crown Prince MBS' Public Investment Fund), says the executives and agents who currently run golf “are conspiring against LIV to protect an antiquated system that prevents golfers from realizing their own power and worth amid a global movement of athlete empowerment.”

As for antiquated social systems in Saudi Arabia that don't involve the murder of a U.S. journalist:

Reports emerged that the women activists who pressed for the policy change had been arrested and imprisoned. As of this morning, 13 are reported to have been arrested; most are women. Apart from the driving issue, they have campaigned against so-called guardianship rules which require Saudi women to receive permission from a male relative before making many life decisions, like traveling. 
Update 8-16-22:  Bad leadership world wide means lots more opportunities to get one's undies in a wad and resort to violence.  Trump's undies have a quick wad trigger that unleashes his ceaseless retaliatory impulse.  
A Saudi woman studying at Leeds University was sentenced to 34 years in prison for using Twitter to follow and retweet activists and dissidents.  The World Economic Forum ran a piece on using AI to reign in abuse on the internet:

By bringing human-curated, multi-language, off-platform intelligence into learning sets, AI will then be able to detect nuanced, novel online abuses at scale, before they reach mainstream platforms.
I imagine the Crown Prince would be most interested in such technology. 

Update 8-17-22:  The Saudi Crown Prince already has such an app.  Someone "reported her on the Saudi app, which is called Kollona Amn, or We Are All Security."

Her alleged crimes including using a website to “cause public unrest” and “assisting those who seek to cause public unrest and destabilise civil and national security by following their Twitter accounts” and by retweeting their tweets.

The World Economic Forum welcomed the Saudi Crown Prince in 2018 and now appears to endorse something similar to his security app. 

Update 9-14-22:  Trump's Sterling, Virginia golf course will host LIV Golf in May 2023.  It will be the third LIV event at a Trump owned course.  

Update 10-19-22:   The Saudi Crown Prince also employs a number of retired U.S. military generals/admirals.  Their commitment to free speech and fair justice did not last the flight to Riyadh or Dubai.

Update 11-12-22:  Former Blue Teamer Peter Orszag and Lazard are behind the Crown Prince's resurgence on the world stage as his financial advisor.

Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund (PIF) is working with Lazard on funding options and a potential initial public offering of Masar, a $27 billion mega project in the holy city of Mecca.

Greed is as greed does.

Lazard Geopolitical Advisory will combine some of the world’s most experienced geopolitical minds with Lazard’s unmatched business expertise.

It's an unholy alliance.

Update 12-6-22:   The U.S. court case against the Crown Prince was dismissed under the guise of sovereign immunity, something the Prince did not have at the time of the execution.  The judge said his hands were tied by the Biden administration's recommendation to the court.  Thugs win. 

Update 3-31-23:  Kushner's Affinity Partners received $200 million each from a Qatar and UAE sovereign wealth fund.  That's on top of the $2 billion from the Saudi PIF.