Remember when lingerie-tycoon-turned-Tory-peer Baroness Michelle Mone — Lady Mone of Mayfair OBE, we should say — was flogging crypto tokens with her soon-to-be-husband businessman Doug Barrowman and Steve “Woz” Wozniak?
You might recall that Mone and Barrowman had tried to raise money via an initial coin offering (ICO) for their “EQUI” token — which would apparently allow buyers to invest in early-stage businesses — but that that’d failed, in quite awkward fashion. After the ICO flop, EQUI was then rebranded to “EQUI Global”, which would focus on the company’s “Token Blockchain technology” and would only involve “sophisticated investors”. It was at that point that Woz — who is co-founder of Apple — mysteriously got involved.
Last June, in its Telegram group, EQUI said a tokenised “security exchange” would be “ready in September”, and that it would be “the 1st security exchange if not one of the 1st”. There has been no such launch. But in September, the company rebranded again.
The website states that EQUI Global is now EQUI Capital Partners, whose sole director, according to Companies House records, is Andrew Barrowman, Doug Barrowman’s 28-year-old son. EQUI has promised since September that further details and an updated website would be “coming soon”, but the site is still just a landing page.
So there doesn’t seem to be much action on that front.
That wasn’t the the baroness’s only venture into cryptoland, however — she also tried to launch a £250m luxury development in Dubai that was to be sold in bitcoin, and which was due to be completed last summer. But The Times reported last year that project had stalled, with government inspectors finding that construction had stopped on the site.
And so now, Lady Mone of Mayfair wants to share her pro-business tips with the rest of us. For a mere £15,000, you can attend a two-day business retreat that includes one whole night at a 5* hotel, along with other exclusive benefits including:
• Business Doctors, what would you like to achieve?
• Personalised wellbeing assessment
• Style tips on how to dress to empower the boardroom
• Goody bag
There’s also “media and public speaking training”, which seems sensible — you need to be able to know how to handle definition lawyers and the like. And after all, according to the press release, Mone “was recently voted as the UK’s Number 1 Female speaker*, recognised both as an entrepreneur and as an advocate for equality for women in business”. (The asterisk was never followed up by any explanation, and we were given no further details from the PR agency when we asked them about that.)
This retreat, surely, pays for itself.
The baroness, the ICO fiasco, and enter Steve Wozniak – FT Alphaville
It’s really happening… Woz joins Baroness Mone’s blockchain company – FT Alphaville
Is Baroness Mone’s true idol Steve Wozniak or Sylvester Stallone? – FT Alphaville
Dubai or bust for Baroness Bitcoin – FT Alphaville