Mike Tyson: Undisputed Truth is at Sheikh Rashid Hall at the Dubai World Trade Centre on Thursday and Friday. Getty Images
Mike Tyson: Undisputed Truth is at Sheikh Rashid Hall at the Dubai World Trade Centre on Thursday and Friday. Getty Images

Mike Tyson rolling with the punches in Dubai



Mike Tyson’s name conjures up a flurry of contradictions: boxing champion, role model, convicted criminal, bird lover, movie star and now Broadway stage actor.

During the prime of his boxing career in the 1980s, “Iron Mike” was the epitome of the brute, exploding in the ring with dazzling and often savage displays, which led to 44 knockouts in 50 bouts.

His career and post-boxing life have been controversial: court cases, bankruptcy and struggles with substance abuse. However, in the last few years, the 47-year-old has begun to fight back. He delivered an intimate portrait in the award-winning 2008 documentary Tyson and had a scene-stealing role in the 2009 comedy The Hangover. He also launched the Mike Tyson Cares youth foundation last year and is now appearing in the critically ­acclaimed one-man stage show Mike Tyson: Undisputed Truth.

With Dubai as the first stop of a planned world tour, Tyson is looking forward to taking the show to new audiences. “I am excited to be coming to Dubai,” he says. “More than that – I have been going through ups and downs in my life so I am just happy to be alive.”

Why did you choose Dubai to start the world tour of your show?

The offer just came and I was surprised that people would be even interested to listen to my story. It makes me happy. I look forward to taking it around and see generally whether they will get the humour. I have been to the Gulf before and visited Abu Dhabi, Riyadh and Mecca. Dubai will be my first time.

Mike Tyson: Undisputed Truth has you telling your life story. Are you totally yourself onstage or do you approach it as a performance?

It is all a character. If I was to be truly Mike Tyson onstage I would cry. I would feel sorry for myself and my mother and my life. I look at it as an actor portraying Mike Tyson and what he experienced. If I didn’t have that objectivity I don’t think I would last five minutes on stage. When I am working it’s all objective and never personal.

How do you and the director Spike Lee prepare for the show?

Just like a fight. You prepare yourself to perfection and you just go out there with the same tenacity, thinking, cleverness and intelligence. Spike is also a perfectionist. He is a taskmaster and I am just grateful he wanted to get ­involved in the show and I believe he took it to another level.

Are the documentary Tyson and the show about you coming to terms with your past?

When I look at these projects sometimes I do get very sad and I may even start feeling sorry for myself. Going back to my past made me realise how bad it was. I realised that there has never been anyone poorer than me in America. I lived in the poorest section in the poorest city in America, it was drug- and crime-infested. No wonder my mother was so helpless because we were so pathetic. I can’t believe that I got out of there. Now that I am older I feel very fortunate and I realise I need more gratitude in my life. So I am working on that and trying to be humble. If I don’t make any more money in my life then I am just grateful to God for giving me such wonderful experiences and children who didn’t have to go through what I went through.

How has your faith helped you?

When I first became Muslim, I didn’t look at it as what it should be. Then when I did that and I believed that God created everything I learnt to love all of God’s creation. Whenever I come to the Middle East, I become more God-conscious because I don’t always make my prayers and here you are reminded with the calls to prayer. I am very aware when I come here.

What has been the biggest change in your life since you left boxing?

Trying to live in the present. If I were to live in the future or in the past, I’d get caught up. I can’t live in two worlds at once. I try to be here, in the present and focused.

• Mike Tyson: Undisputed Truth is at Sheikh Rashid Hall at the Dubai World Trade Centre on Thursday and Friday. There are two performances each night, 6pm and 10pm. Tickets begin from Dh195 from www.tixbox.com

sasaeed@thenational.ae

Confirmed bouts (more to be added)

Cory Sandhagen v Umar Nurmagomedov
Nick Diaz v Vicente Luque
Michael Chiesa v Tony Ferguson
Deiveson Figueiredo v Marlon Vera
Mackenzie Dern v Loopy Godinez

Tickets for the August 3 Fight Night, held in partnership with the Department of Culture and Tourism Abu Dhabi, went on sale earlier this month, through www.etihadarena.ae and www.ticketmaster.ae.

Tributes from the UAE's personal finance community

• Sebastien Aguilar, who heads SimplyFI.org, a non-profit community where people learn to invest Bogleheads’ style

“It is thanks to Jack Bogle’s work that this community exists and thanks to his work that many investors now get the full benefits of long term, buy and hold stock market investing.

Compared to the industry, investing using the common sense approach of a Boglehead saves a lot in costs and guarantees higher returns than the average actively managed fund over the long term. 

From a personal perspective, learning how to invest using Bogle’s approach was a turning point in my life. I quickly realised there was no point chasing returns and paying expensive advisers or platforms. Once money is taken care off, you can work on what truly matters, such as family, relationships or other projects. I owe Jack Bogle for that.”

• Sam Instone, director of financial advisory firm AES International

"Thought to have saved investors over a trillion dollars, Jack Bogle’s ideas truly changed the way the world invests. Shaped by his own personal experiences, his philosophy and basic rules for investors challenged the status quo of a self-interested global industry and eventually prevailed.  Loathed by many big companies and commission-driven salespeople, he has transformed the way well-informed investors and professional advisers make decisions."

• Demos Kyprianou, a board member of SimplyFI.org

"Jack Bogle for me was a rebel, a revolutionary who changed the industry and gave the little guy like me, a chance. He was also a mentor who inspired me to take the leap and take control of my own finances."

• Steve Cronin, founder of DeadSimpleSaving.com

"Obsessed with reducing fees, Jack Bogle structured Vanguard to be owned by its clients – that way the priority would be fee minimisation for clients rather than profit maximisation for the company.

His real gift to us has been the ability to invest in the stock market (buy and hold for the long term) rather than be forced to speculate (try to make profits in the shorter term) or even worse have others speculate on our behalf.

Bogle has given countless investors the ability to get on with their life while growing their wealth in the background as fast as possible. The Financial Independence movement would barely exist without this."

• Zach Holz, who blogs about financial independence at The Happiest Teacher

"Jack Bogle was one of the greatest forces for wealth democratisation the world has ever seen.  He allowed people a way to be free from the parasitical "financial advisers" whose only real concern are the fat fees they get from selling you over-complicated "products" that have caused millions of people all around the world real harm.”

• Tuan Phan, a board member of SimplyFI.org

"In an industry that’s synonymous with greed, Jack Bogle was a lone wolf, swimming against the tide. When others were incentivised to enrich themselves, he stood by the ‘fiduciary’ standard – something that is badly needed in the financial industry of the UAE."

Vikram Vedha

Directors: Gayatri, Pushkar

Stars: Hrithik Roshan, Saif Ali Khan, Radhika Apte

Rating: 3.5/5

COMPANY PROFILE

Company name: Almouneer
Started: 2017
Founders: Dr Noha Khater and Rania Kadry
Based: Egypt
Number of staff: 120
Investment: Bootstrapped, with support from Insead and Egyptian government, seed round of
$3.6 million led by Global Ventures

Engine: 3.5-litre V6

Transmission: eight-speed automatic

Power: 290hp

Torque: 340Nm

Price: Dh155,800

On sale: now

The specs: 2018 Nissan Patrol Nismo

Price: base / as tested: Dh382,000

Engine: 5.6-litre V8

Gearbox: Seven-speed automatic

Power: 428hp @ 5,800rpm

Torque: 560Nm @ 3,600rpm

Fuel economy, combined: 12.7L / 100km

In numbers: China in Dubai

The number of Chinese people living in Dubai: An estimated 200,000

Number of Chinese people in International City: Almost 50,000

Daily visitors to Dragon Mart in 2018/19: 120,000

Daily visitors to Dragon Mart in 2010: 20,000

Percentage increase in visitors in eight years: 500 per cent

Moonfall

Director: Rolan Emmerich

Stars: Patrick Wilson, Halle Berry

Rating: 3/5

A Round of Applause

Director: Berkun Oya
Starring: Aslihan Gürbüz, Fatih Artman, Cihat Suvarioglu
Rating: 4/5

The specs

Engine: 1.6-litre 4-cyl turbo

Power: 217hp at 5,750rpm

Torque: 300Nm at 1,900rpm

Transmission: eight-speed auto

Price: from Dh130,000

On sale: now

Rebel Moon - Part One: A Child of Fire

Director: Zack Snyder
Stars: Sofia Boutella, Djimon Hounsou, Ed Skrein, Michiel Huisman, Charlie Hunnam
Rating: 2/5

Mercer, the investment consulting arm of US services company Marsh & McLennan, expects its wealth division to at least double its assets under management (AUM) in the Middle East as wealth in the region continues to grow despite economic headwinds, a company official said.

Mercer Wealth, which globally has $160 billion in AUM, plans to boost its AUM in the region to $2-$3bn in the next 2-3 years from the present $1bn, said Yasir AbuShaban, a Dubai-based principal with Mercer Wealth.

Within the next two to three years, we are looking at reaching $2 to $3 billion as a conservative estimate and we do see an opportunity to do so,” said Mr AbuShaban.

Mercer does not directly make investments, but allocates clients’ money they have discretion to, to professional asset managers. They also provide advice to clients.

“We have buying power. We can negotiate on their (client’s) behalf with asset managers to provide them lower fees than they otherwise would have to get on their own,” he added.

Mercer Wealth’s clients include sovereign wealth funds, family offices, and insurance companies among others.

From its office in Dubai, Mercer also looks after Africa, India and Turkey, where they also see opportunity for growth.

Wealth creation in Middle East and Africa (MEA) grew 8.5 per cent to $8.1 trillion last year from $7.5tn in 2015, higher than last year’s global average of 6 per cent and the second-highest growth in a region after Asia-Pacific which grew 9.9 per cent, according to consultancy Boston Consulting Group (BCG). In the region, where wealth grew just 1.9 per cent in 2015 compared with 2014, a pickup in oil prices has helped in wealth generation.

BCG is forecasting MEA wealth will rise to $12tn by 2021, growing at an annual average of 8 per cent.

Drivers of wealth generation in the region will be split evenly between new wealth creation and growth of performance of existing assets, according to BCG.

Another general trend in the region is clients’ looking for a comprehensive approach to investing, according to Mr AbuShaban.

“Institutional investors or some of the families are seeing a slowdown in the available capital they have to invest and in that sense they are looking at optimizing the way they manage their portfolios and making sure they are not investing haphazardly and different parts of their investment are working together,” said Mr AbuShaban.

Some clients also have a higher appetite for risk, given the low interest-rate environment that does not provide enough yield for some institutional investors. These clients are keen to invest in illiquid assets, such as private equity and infrastructure.

“What we have seen is a desire for higher returns in what has been a low-return environment specifically in various fixed income or bonds,” he said.

“In this environment, we have seen a de facto increase in the risk that clients are taking in things like illiquid investments, private equity investments, infrastructure and private debt, those kind of investments were higher illiquidity results in incrementally higher returns.”

The Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, one of the largest sovereign wealth funds, said in its 2016 report that has gradually increased its exposure in direct private equity and private credit transactions, mainly in Asian markets and especially in China and India. The authority’s private equity department focused on structured equities owing to “their defensive characteristics.”

Company profile

Company name: Fasset
Started: 2019
Founders: Mohammad Raafi Hossain, Daniel Ahmed
Based: Dubai
Sector: FinTech
Initial investment: $2.45 million
Current number of staff: 86
Investment stage: Pre-series B
Investors: Investcorp, Liberty City Ventures, Fatima Gobi Ventures, Primal Capital, Wealthwell Ventures, FHS Capital, VN2 Capital, local family offices

Indoor Cricket World Cup Dubai 2017

Venue Insportz, Dubai; Admission Free

Day 1 fixtures (Saturday)

Men 1.45pm, Malaysia v Australia (Court 1); Singapore v India (Court 2); UAE v New Zealand (Court 3); South Africa v Sri Lanka (Court 4)

Women Noon, New Zealand v South Africa (Court 3); England v UAE (Court 4); 5.15pm, Australia v UAE (Court 3); England v New Zealand (Court 4)

Company Profile

Company name: Namara
Started: June 2022
Founder: Mohammed Alnamara
Based: Dubai
Sector: Microfinance
Current number of staff: 16
Investment stage: Series A
Investors: Family offices

ACC T20 Women’s Championship

UAE fixtures
Friday, June 17 v Oman
Saturday, June 18 v Singapore
Monday, June 20 v Malaysia
Wednesday, June 22 v Qatar
Friday, June 24, semi-final
Saturday, June 25, final

UAE squad: Chaya Mughal (captain), Esha Oza, Indhuja Nandakumar, Kavisha Kumari, Khushi Sharma, Lavanya Keny, Priyanjali Jain, Rithika Rajith, Samaira Dharnidharka, Sanchin Singh, Siya Gokhale, Suraksha Kotte, Theertha Satish, Vaishnave Mahesh

Sarfira

Director: Sudha Kongara Prasad

Starring: Akshay Kumar, Radhika Madan, Paresh Rawal

Rating: 2/5

The years Ramadan fell in May

1987

1954

1921

1888

MATA
Artist: M.I.A
Label: Island
Rating: 3.5/5

ETFs explained

Exhchange traded funds are bought and sold like shares, but operate as index-tracking funds, passively following their chosen indices, such as the S&P 500, FTSE 100 and the FTSE All World, plus a vast range of smaller exchanges and commodities, such as gold, silver, copper sugar, coffee and oil.

ETFs have zero upfront fees and annual charges as low as 0.07 per cent a year, which means you get to keep more of your returns, as actively managed funds can charge as much as 1.5 per cent a year.

There are thousands to choose from, with the five biggest providers BlackRock’s iShares range, Vanguard, State Street Global Advisors SPDR ETFs, Deutsche Bank AWM X-trackers and Invesco PowerShares.