Author Archives: Thomas Schellen

Troubled and troublesome

Troubled and troublesome

Every stroll in the Eastern Mediterranean lands means walking in the presence of some historic reference. Transformed into politics and national ideologies, history has long been a tool of identity building. When looking at identity politics, these days may we squirm over the rise of new, presumably white identity politics in the United States or

The art of insurance

Brokers play an important role in highly functional insurance markets, providing clients with advice on risk and policy choices. They often help clients obtain covers, assist them with claims, and act as intermediaries between clients and insurers. But Lebanon’s insurance brokers have faced several difficult years in a row. To gauge the views of licensed

Taking risks

Adding to the misty picture of insurance industry prospects in Lebanon are uncertainties over the sector’s ability to exploit three major opportunities which are slowly taking shape inside and outside of Lebanon: energy, infrastructure, and reconstruction. The book of doubts on the purported three new miracles includes some question marks if the industry will be

In the fog

Assessing the insurance industry of Lebanon at the current junction of global insurance challenges, regional vagaries, domestic economic hurdles, and the country’s ongoing political issues is not without difficulty. Just as with the national economy, there are hopes and interesting prospects, but they are mainly just over the horizon—whether in the reconstruction of war-torn Syria

Valued opinions

After over a decade of dormancy, Lebanon’s Economic and Social Council (ESC) was reactivated last November. The ESC is an advisory body to the government, and its opinons are non-binding. Executive met with the economist Mazen Soueid, one of 71 individuals named to serve on committees of the ESC, to understand how the institution can

Creating synergies

MIC Ventures is a new fund in the Lebanese entrepreneurship ecosystem. Seeking to boost the value of startups and young companies that specialize in areas of interest from a mobile telecommunications perspective as well as establishing partnerships between sector companies and the two Lebanese mobile networks, MIC Ventures is itself a startup backed by governmental

A fund manager’s dream

The MIC in MIC Ventures is not short for Mission Impossible, Cruise. But it could be. Khaled Zeidan, the managing director of MIC Ventures, could easily have a second career modeling cool shades, and the chosen mission of MIC Ventures, should it succeed, will bring life to a sector whose true potential in Lebanon has

Moving into a new world of parliamentary participation

At the end of February 2018, German women did it again. Chancellor Angela Merkel—supposedly the most powerful woman in the world, if one believes Forbes—won her Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party’s election overwhelmingly to form a coalition government with the Social Democratic Party (SDP), which had been hotly debated at the party and national level

Lebanon hops on the crypto train

Antoine Yazbek and Zaki Soubra are budding Lebanese cryptocurrency entrepreneurs, and they radiate seriousness in their endeavor. As a journalist, one is inclined to consider an entrepreneur serious if they answer a series of probing interview questions without losing their temper at the intrepid—or sometimes just intractable—media type across the table. A more general measure

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