شركة مبادلة (Mubadala Development Company PJSC), an Abu Dhabi-based state holding company, appears receptive to the global phenomenon sweeping through professional finance circles that is bitcoin. Its CEO, when asked about Jamie Dimon’s comments calling the decentralized currency a “fraud” that will “blow up,” answered that it was too soon to dismiss Satoshi’s creation.
Jamie Dimon Dismissal Dismissed
“I have still have not formed a clear view on this,” Khaldoon Khalifa Al Mubarak, CEO and Managing Director of the Abu Dhabi company, began with regard to the technology undergirding bitcoin. “We’re still getting educated on this. The area I would have concern on, still, is the regulatory side. How is this going to be regulated?” he asked rhetorically.
Mubadala is an Abu Dhabi state holding company operating within a joint-stock scheme with assets well above 100 billion USD. The fund is proposed as “a pioneering global investor, deploying capital with integrity and ingenuity to accelerate economic growth for the long-term benefit of Abu Dhabi,” according to its website.
“Because I think blockchain,” Mr. Al Mubarak continued, “its growth, let’s say, from single digits to double digits to astronomical growth, will really depend on how fast you can execute, and will you be able to execute under a regulatory environment that is acceptable. I think if they’re able to crack that, I think it’s going to be an incredible story. But, to date, I’d say I am still on the fence.”
The CNBC interviewer then asked in follow-up: “What about bitcoin, because Jamie Dimon is calling it a fraud. Do you agree?”
“No. I wouldn’t agree in calling it a fraud,” Mr. Al Mubarak answered quickly. “I would say time will tell. It could well be and it could as well not be. I think one has to be open-minded.”
Khaldoon Khalifa Al Mubarak
Within the emirate, Khaldoon Khalifa Al Mubarak is a gadfly. He’s on hand for every important world-leader reception taken by Abu Dhabi’s President, His Highness Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, from Bill Gates to bilateral talks with France.
Educated in the United States and young at 41, Mr. Al Mubarak spreads himself among many boards and directorships in and around Abu Dhabi. His willingness to at least entertain bitcoin and distributed ledger technology is an encouraging sign for those who wish for greater crypto adoption in the region.