Wednesday 21 March 2018

Bono lends rock star glamour to tech summit movers and shakers

Peter Flanagan New Technology Correspondent

THE biggest rock star from Ireland met some of the biggest technology and economic stars in the world yesterday as a three-day industry summit continued in Dublin.

Bono, who famously bought into Facebook early through his venture capital company, lent his star power to the 'Founders' summit yesterday, which has seen 150 high-profile executives and entrepreneurs gather in Dublin for meetings, presentations and partying.

Speaking at the closed-door event in the Mansion House, the U2 frontman expounded on his charity, One International, which is focused on fighting extreme poverty and disease around the world and in Africa.

Wearing his now-familiar brown leather jacket and trademark tinted glasses, the singer took part in a "fireside chat" with the charity's executive director Jamie Drummond.


He held the 150-strong audience in the palm of his hands while he hammered home the differences that can be made by investment in Africa, and the changes that have come about due to the transparency and accountability demanded in charity today.

Meanwhile, Larry Summers, a former US Treasury Secretary in the Clinton administration and economic adviser to President Barack Obama, strongly defended the Obama government's economic strategy.

He also emphasised the need to pursue growth policies at a time of weak private sector demand despite low public borrowing and interest rates.

Bono's appearance was the highlight of the Founders event, which also featured appearances by Flipboard founder Michael McCue and former NATO commander and US presidential candidate Wesley Clark.

There were also a number of roundtable discussions aimed at promoting Ireland, involving Enterprise Ireland's Frank Ryan and the Department of Finance's top civil servant, John Moran, as well as the IDA's Barry O'Leary.

The three-day event concludes today with activities on the Powerscourt Estate in Co Wicklow and a party in Dublin.

It brings to an end nearly a week of technology activities that began with the Dublin Web Summit in the RDS, which has been used to showcase Dublin as a destination for technology firms expanding into Europe.

Irish Independent

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