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Kate Middleton, the woman who rose to the top and conquered the British people | People

Kate Middleton, 42, had to grace thousands of covers and front pages until she reached a place where it was not criticism that could be heard, but the admiration of the public. When she revealed that she is undergoing preventive chemotherapy to stop the cancer she is suffering from, the shock was not her own, but that of all the media and anonymous — and not so anonymous — people on social media who had been making jokes about her health for two months.

Before she became known to half the world, first as the Duchess of Cambridge, then Princess of Wales, and always as the wife of the heir to the throne, William, Prince of Wales, she succeeded in climbing Mont Blanc, the highest peak in the Alps and the highest in Western Europe, with her father, Michael Middleton. She came from a very athletic family, who did not shy away from challenges.

“Over the years, we have climbed many mountains together. As a family, we will climb this one with you too,” Middleton’s brother, James William Middleton, wrote on Friday on his Instagram account, alongside an old photo of the two, showing them as two smiling children still in the midst of nature.

No sooner had her courtship with Charles and Diana’s eldest son come to light than the British tabloid press accused Kate of being a social climber. She and her sister, Pippa, were referred to as the “Wisteria sisters,” with the sexist overtones that continue to mark U.K. tabloids today. This was in reference to Wisteria, a plant that is popular on the facades of London residences: it is beautiful and decorative, has an intense fragrance and climbs quickly, the joke goes.

Prince William with his then girlfriend, Kate Middleton, at the Royal Air Force base in Cranwell on April 11, 2008.
Prince William with his then girlfriend, Kate Middleton, at the Royal Air Force base in Cranwell on April 11, 2008.POOL New (REUTERS)

Then there was also the nickname “Waity Katie,” to taunt the young woman who waited desperately for Prince William to decide to propose to her. They referred to her as a “commoner,” and called into question her jitters in public, her shrill voice and her dull attire. After the years in which Lady Di was the model, such a conservative, conventional and nondescript character was unpopular. Despite these characteristics being precisely the ones that were most admired in the late Elizabeth II.

Years of revival

Even the series The Crown (Netflix) latched onto the theory that Carole Middleton had painstakingly sculpted her daughters’ social trajectory to the very top. She is credited with the decision to pull Kate out of Edinburgh University, when she had barely been there for a year, and send her to St. Andrews, where Prince William had just enrolled, and where their courtship eventually materialized.

On April 29, 2011, the wedding was held at Westminster Abbey. Since then, Middleton has not taken a wrong step, at least in the view of that part of the conservative and traditional British society that desires a monarchy with all its conventions. She is a dedicated mother — the couple has three children: George, Charlotte and Louis —, and supports her husband unconditionally. She was devoted to Elizabeth II and now follows her father-in-law, King Charles III. When she appears at public events, she shows polished correctness. In other words, she has all the attributes required of a future queen.

The Duchess of Cambridge arrived at the funeral of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. Kate Middleton wore a pearl necklace and earrings that were part of Queen Elizabeth II’s personal collection. Pieces that the monarch also lent to Lady Diana in 1982.
The Duchess of Cambridge arrived at the funeral of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. Kate Middleton wore a pearl necklace and earrings that were part of Queen Elizabeth II’s personal collection. Pieces that the monarch also lent to Lady Diana in 1982.CHRIS JACKSON (AFP)

Some critics saw more calculation than naturalness in her behavior. Hilary Mantel, the writer idolized by many Britons for her trilogy on the Tudors, defined Kate as “precision-made” with no apparent flaws, “so different from Diana, whose human awkwardness and emotional incontinence showed in her every gesture.” However, those who keenly followed the ins and outs of the British royal family, or those who simply want as little extravagance as possible from their institutions, grew to love a woman who carried out the duties of her office rigorously and in good spirits. The Windsors have always known that a smile is a much more effective communication weapon than any public statement, and Kate has never stopped smiling.

When she confessed to writer Giovanna Fletcher that she had felt “slightly terrifying” when introducing newborn Prince George to the media in 2013 from the hospital steps — a tradition bestowed on all the women in the royal family, which only Meghan Markle chose to break — Kate adhered to the rule that worked so well for her grandmother-in-law Elizabeth II: obligations always come before needs. “For us to be able to share that joy and appreciation with the public, I felt was really important,” Middleton explained.

In recent days, the Princess of Wales has discovered that the public is insatiable when it comes to news. It does not want just the joys, it also wants the sorrow. Despite her initial resistance, and her desire to protect the couple’s three children, Kate has chosen to reveal to the world her state of health and her own current anguish. And in doing so, she has climbed back to the peak that took her so much effort to conquer: the only place where she can feel protected.

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Assessing Property Size: What Square Footage Can You Get With The Average UK House Price In Your Area?

Assessing Property Size In The UK

In the United Kingdom, there is a prevailing tendency to gauge the size of residences based on the number of bedrooms rather than square footage. In fact, research indicates that three out of five individuals are unaware of the square footage of their property.

However, a comprehensive analysis conducted by Savills reveals significant variations in property sizes throughout the country. For instance, with the average property price standing at £340,837, this amount would typically afford a studio flat spanning 551 square feet in London, according to the prominent estate agency.

Conversely, in the North East region, the same sum would secure a spacious five-bedroom house measuring 1,955 square feet, nearly four times the size of a comparable property in London.

Best value: Heading to the North East of England is where buyers will get the most from their money

In Scotland, the median house price equates to a sizable investment capable of procuring a generous four-bedroom residence spanning 1,743 square feet. Conversely, in Wales, Yorkshire & The Humber, and the North West, this sum affords a slightly smaller four-bedroom dwelling of approximately 1,500 square feet, while in the East and West Midlands, it accommodates a 1,300 square foot home. In stark contrast, within the South West, £340,837 secures a modest 1,000 square foot property, and in the East, an even more confined 928 square feet.

London presents the most challenging market, where this budget offers the least purchasing power. Following closely, the South East allows for 825 square feet of space or a medium-sized two-bedroom dwelling. Lucian Cook, head of residential research at Savills, emphasizes the profound disparity in purchasing potential across Britain, ranging from compact studio flats in London to spacious four or five-bedroom residences in parts of North East England.

While square footage serves as a critical metric, with a significant portion of Britons unfamiliar with their property’s dimensions, the number of bedrooms remains a traditional indicator of size. Personal preferences, such as a preference for larger kitchens, may influence property selection. For those prioritizing ample space, Easington, County Durham, offers a substantial 2,858 square foot, five-bedroom home, while Rhondda, Wales, and Na h-Eileanan an Iar, Scotland, provide 2,625 and 2,551 square feet, respectively. Conversely, in St Albans, Hertfordshire, £340,837 secures a mere 547 square feet, equivalent to a one-bedroom flat.

The disparity continues in central London, where purchasing power diminishes considerably. In Kensington, the budget accommodates a mere 220 square feet, contrasting with the slightly more spacious 236 square feet in Westminster. Conversely, in Dagenham, the same investment translates to 770 square feet. Three properties currently listed on Rightmove exemplify the diversity within this price range across the UK market.

South of the river: This semi-detached house is located near to three different train stations

South of the river: This semi-detached house is located near to three different train stations

2. Lewisham: One-bed house, £345,000

This one-bedroom property in Lewisham, South London, is on the market for £345,000.

The semi-detached house is set over two floors, and has a private patio.

The property is located near to bus links and amenities, as well as Catford train station.

Edinburgh fringe: This three-bed property is located on the edge of the city, near to the town of Musselburgh

Edinburgh fringe: This three-bed property is located on the edge of the city, near to the town of Musselburgh

3. Edinburgh: Three-bed house, £350,000

This three-bedroom detached house in Edinburgh could be yours for £350,000.

The house, which has a two-car driveway, boasts a large kitchen diner, and is within easy reach of Newcriaghall train station.


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Top 10 Florida Cities Dominate The Business Startup Landscape In The U.S.

Top 10 Florida Cities And Business Startup Landscape In The U.S.

The Voice Of EU | Florida emerges as a hub for entrepreneurial endeavors, with its vibrant business landscape and conducive environment for startups. Renowned for its low corporate tax rates and a high concentration of investors, the Sunshine State beckons aspiring entrepreneurs seeking fertile grounds to launch and grow their businesses.

In a recent report by WalletHub, Florida cities dominate the list of the top 10 best destinations for business startups, showcasing their resilience and economic vitality amidst challenging times.

From Orlando’s thriving market to Miami’s dynamic ecosystem, each city offers unique advantages and opportunities for entrepreneurial success. Let’s delve into the chronologically listed cities that exemplify Florida’s prominence in the business startup arena.

1. Orlando Leads the Way: Orlando emerges as the most attractive market in the U.S. for business startups, with a remarkable surge in small business establishments. WalletHub’s latest report highlights Orlando’s robust ecosystem, fostering the survival and growth of startups, buoyed by a high concentration of investors per capita.

2. Tampa Takes Second Place: Securing the second spot among large cities for business startups, Tampa boasts a favorable business environment attributed to its low corporate tax rates. The city’s ample investor presence further fortifies startups, providing essential resources for navigating the initial years of business operations.

3. Charlotte’s Diverse Industries: Claiming the third position, Charlotte stands out for its diverse industrial landscape and exceptionally low corporate taxes, enticing companies to reinvest capital. This conducive environment propels entrepreneurial endeavors, contributing to sustained economic growth.

4. Jacksonville’s Rising Profile: Jacksonville emerges as a promising destination for startups, bolstered by its favorable business climate. The city’s strategic positioning fosters entrepreneurial ventures, attracting aspiring business owners seeking growth opportunities.

5. Miami’s Entrepreneurial Hub: Miami solidifies its position as a thriving entrepreneurial hub, attracting businesses with its dynamic ecosystem and strategic location. The city’s vibrant startup culture and supportive infrastructure make it an appealing destination for ventures of all sizes.

6. Atlanta’s Economic Momentum: Atlanta’s ascent in the business startup landscape underscores its economic momentum and favorable business conditions. The city’s strategic advantages and conducive policies provide a fertile ground for entrepreneurial ventures to flourish.

7. Fort Worth’s Business-Friendly Environment: Fort Worth emerges as a prime destination for startups, offering a business-friendly environment characterized by low corporate taxes. The city’s supportive ecosystem and strategic initiatives facilitate the growth and success of new ventures.

8. Austin’s Innovation Hub: Austin cements its status as an innovation hub, attracting startups with its vibrant entrepreneurial community and progressive policies. The city’s robust infrastructure and access to capital foster a conducive environment for business growth and innovation.

9. Durham’s Emerging Entrepreneurship Scene: Durham’s burgeoning entrepreneurship scene positions it as a promising destination for startups, fueled by its supportive ecosystem and strategic initiatives. The city’s collaborative culture and access to resources contribute to the success of new ventures.

10. St. Petersburg’s Thriving Business Community: St. Petersburg rounds off the top 10 with its thriving business community and supportive ecosystem for startups. The city’s strategic advantages and favorable business climate make it an attractive destination for entrepreneurial endeavors.

Despite unprecedented challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Great Resignation, and high inflation, these top Florida cities remain resilient and well-equipped to overcome obstacles, offering promising opportunities for business owners and entrepreneurs alike.


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European Startup Ecosystems Awash With Gulf Investment – Here Are Some Of The Top Investors

European Startup Ecosystem Getting Flooded With Gulf Investments

The Voice Of EU | In recent years, European entrepreneurs seeking capital infusion have widened their horizons beyond the traditional American investors, increasingly turning their gaze towards the lucrative investment landscape of the Gulf region. With substantial capital reservoirs nestled within sovereign wealth funds and corporate venture capital entities, Gulf nations have emerged as compelling investors for European startups and scaleups.

According to comprehensive data from Dealroom, the influx of investment from Gulf countries into European startups soared to a staggering $3 billion in 2023, marking a remarkable 5x surge from the $627 million recorded in 2018.

This substantial injection of capital, accounting for approximately 5% of the total funding raised in the region, underscores the growing prominence of Gulf investors in European markets.

Particularly noteworthy is the significant support extended to growth-stage companies, with over two-thirds of Gulf investments in 2023 being directed towards funding rounds exceeding $100 million. This influx of capital provides a welcome boost to European companies grappling with the challenge of securing well-capitalized investors locally.

Delving deeper into the landscape, Sifted has identified the most active Gulf investors in European startups over the past two years.

Leading the pack is Aramco Ventures, headquartered in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia. Bolstered by a substantial commitment, Aramco Ventures boasts a $1.5 billion sustainability fund, alongside an additional $4 billion allocated to its venture capital arm, positioning it as a formidable player with a total investment capacity of $7 billion by 2027. With a notable presence in 17 funding rounds, Aramco Ventures has strategically invested in ventures such as Carbon Clean Solutions and ANYbotics, aligning with its focus on businesses that offer strategic value.

Following closely is Mubadala Capital, headquartered in Abu Dhabi, UAE, with an impressive tally of 13 investments in European startups over the past two years. Backed by the sovereign wealth fund Mubadala Investment Company, Mubadala Capital’s diverse investment portfolio spans private equity, venture capital, and alternative solutions. Notable investments include Klarna, TIER, and Juni, reflecting its global investment strategy across various sectors.

Ventura Capital, based in Dubai, UAE, secured its position as a key player with nine investments in European startups. With a presence in Dubai, London, and Tokyo, Ventura Capital boasts an international network of limited partners and a sector-agnostic investment approach, contributing to its noteworthy investments in companies such as Coursera and Spotify.

Qatar Investment Authority, headquartered in Doha, Qatar, has made significant inroads into the European startup ecosystem with six notable investments. As the sovereign wealth fund of Qatar, QIA’s diversified portfolio spans private and public equity, infrastructure, and real estate, with strategic investments in tech startups across healthcare, consumer, and industrial sectors.

MetaVision Dubai, a newcomer to the scene, has swiftly garnered attention with six investments in European startups. Focusing on seed to Series A startups in the metaverse and Web3 space, MetaVision raised an undisclosed fund in 2022, affirming its commitment to emerging technologies and innovative ventures.

Investcorp, headquartered in Manama, Bahrain, has solidified its presence with six investments in European startups. With a focus on mid-sized B2B businesses, Investcorp’s diverse investment strategies encompass private equity, real estate, infrastructure, and credit management, contributing to its notable investments in companies such as Terra Quantum and TruKKer.

Chimera Capital, based in Abu Dhabi, UAE, rounds off the list with four strategic investments in European startups. As part of a prominent business conglomerate, Chimera Capital leverages its global reach and sector-agnostic approach to drive investments in ventures such as CMR Surgical and Neat Burger.

In conclusion, the burgeoning influx of capital from Gulf investors into European startups underscores the region’s growing appeal as a vibrant hub for innovation and entrepreneurship. With key players such as Aramco Ventures, Mubadala Capital, and Ventura Capital leading the charge, European startups are poised to benefit from the strategic investments and partnerships forged with Gulf investors, propelling them towards sustained growth and success in the global market landscape.


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