27 September 2005

DIFX Launch

Who would have thought it, after all the long hours, crisis and continent-crossing efforts, the Dubai International Financial Centre actually launched on time.

Since Dubai may not be the inventor of the Soft Launch, but certainly a big fan, DIFX took a leaf out of that particular book and started operations on a small scale on Monday. The building contractors, who had been putting in a lot of hours to get the building finished on time for the start of trading, pulled out all the stops to get everything cleaned up and smartened up for the press conference. This included laying a large area of turf, which has already started to go brown because the sprinkler system that usually goes into the ground before the planting hadn't been completed. Such is the desire to make it look nice, specially as there was a rumour that Sheik Mohammed may attend.


Last minute efforts to beautify the exchange

Still, in the end it all went well, and then it was the party in the evening that was the thing. Everyone met at Lotus One at the Novotel, where champagne flowed freely and the waiters distributed delicious snacks. After that some of us retired to the Kasbar (as in "Rock the..."), my first clubbing experience in Dubai.




There is still a lot to do at the exchange, with IPO's promised to be happening thick and fast and new members joining every week. For now I think everyone is just glad that trading is happening after such an intense effort by everyone.

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