Publication Date: 16/02/2023 ISBN: 9780241988947 Category:

The Key Man

Simon Clark, Will Louch

Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
Publication Date: 16/02/2023 ISBN: 9780241988947 Category:
Paperback / Softback





Two Wall Street reporters investigate the man entrusted with millions to make profits and end poverty but now stands accused of masterminding one of the biggest, most brazen frauds in history.

‘Gripping’ Guardian


Arif Naqvi was a man with an immeasurable dream: to end world suffering, poverty and disease. His vision? Capitalism used for good, progress and profit.

He persuaded politicians he could help stabilize the Middle East after 9/11 by providing jobs. He got Bill Gates to help him start a billion-dollar fund to improve health care in poor countries. He won the support of Obama’s administration and was even appointed to boards by the UN and Interpol.

The only problem? In 2019 Arif Naqvi was arrested on charges of money laundering and misappropriating hundreds of millions of dollars. He now faces up to 291 years in jail. This is the true, jaw-dropping investigation into the smoke and mirrors world of The Key Man.


‘Impeccably researched and sumptuous in its detail . . . It’s a page-turner’ The Economist

‘This book tells the story brilliantly. . . Well-paced and cleverly organised. It also draws some devastating conclusions’ The Sunday Times

‘A pacy and deeply-reported tale’ Financial Times


Publisher Review

A scorching epilogue... This is tough stuff and this is a tough book that should contribute to much greater scepticism about the bloated financial system * The Sunday Times * Impeccably researched and sumptuous in its detail...It is a page-turner, built around a riveting portrait of the key man of the title. Mr. Naqvi who comes across as a teeming mass of contradictions * The Economist * A pacy and deeply-reported tale * Financial Times * Gripping... The account raises questions over whether 'impact investing' and 'stakeholder capitalism' are less about poverty alleviation for the world than guilt alleviation for the Davos elite * Guardian * For an astonishing story of how the global economy can be manipulated, read the devastating account in The Key Man * David Ignatius, Washington Post * A riveting account of the intertwining of brilliance and greed... Should be a mandatory read at all schools of journalism and business schools. It's a rare tour de force from which both can learn * Business Standard, India * Clark and Louch have done an outstanding job in untangling the knots that usually keep the secretive world of private equity out of reach for most people * Pakistan's Dawn * This excellent book, which is more true crime than finance, describes in cinematic detail how Naqvi and his colleagues pumped up valuations, moved money between the company, its funds and their personal accounts, and lied about performance * Reuters * It's a sorry tale, one that raises important questions about our ability to deliver 'ethical' capitalism * Chris Blackhurst, The National * Spellbinding. You won't want to put the book down * Eileen Applebaum, coauthor of Private Equity at Work * An unbelievable true tale of greed, corruption and manipulation among the world's financial elite and how the World Bank, Bill Gates and the governments of the US, UK, France, and many more fell victim to the world's largest private equity Ponzi scheme * Harry Markopolos, the Bernie Madoff whistleblower * The rigour and colossal effort that went into this book transpires on each page. There is no dull moment. It is 300 pages of reading pleasure mixed with serious discomfort at what is being presented * Ludovic Phalippou, professor of Financial Economics at Said Business School, University of Oxford * A rip-roaring account of one of the biggest frauds in corporate history * Owen Walker, award-winning FT journalist and author of Built on a Lie * This splendid cautionary tale lays bare the vulnerabilities of the world of high finance, where even the grandees of Davos were marks for the kid from Karachi * John Helyar, coauthor of Barbarians at the Gate * A highly readable reminder of how greed and gullibility so often go together, and why we need good investigative journalism to keep reminding us that if the pitch (and the person doing the pitch) look just too good to be true there is probably something fishy going on behind the scenes * Professor Sir David Omand, former director of GCHQ and author of How Spies Think * An emphatic indictment of the 'expert class' people who think agility with numbers is somehow equivalent to wisdom and morality * Duff McDonald, author of The Golden Passport *

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