Michael Seid Invited to Speak at “Enriching the Middle East’s Economic Future” Conference in Doha, Qatar

2011 Doha Conference Qatar

West Hartford, Connecticut, April 14, 2011 – MSA Worldwide, recognized as the leading strategic and tactical advisor for emerging and established franchisors, announced today that Michael Seid, Managing Director, has been invited by the Foreign Ministry of the State of Qatar and the UCLA Center for Middle East Development to speak at the Enriching the Middle East’s Economic Future conference to be held in Doha, Qatar on May 9th and 10th, 2011.

Together with Jonathan Solish, Partner, Bryan Cave, Santa Monica, CA, Michael will discuss “The Role of Franchising in the Regional Economy and Local Businesses.” Following their discussion, Michael and Jonathan will hold a wide-ranging franchising workshop for conference attendees on the design and development of franchise systems; the acquisition of franchise rights for the Middle East; and the business, financial, and legal requirements necessary to make the Middle East a preferred target for international franchise expansion.

“This is a particularly important time for considering the power of franchising to create jobs, financial opportunities, and stability in the Middle East,” said Michael Seid, Managing Director of MSA Worldwide. The Middle East is a region of tremendous wealth, high education, and yet staggering unemployment. The current uprising in much of the region makes it important that Middle East governments consider franchising as an economic development tool to address the economic and entrepreneurial needs of their citizens, said Seid.

The conference, held in conjunction with the 11th annual Doha Forum, is expected to bring together 700 participants from 100 countries. The Doha Conference has grown into an internationally recognized forum for dignitaries, investors, and experts from academia, economics, healthcare, politics and business to discuss pressing global policy issues and to conduct private business.

The focus of this year’s conference is to examine and contrast the differing economic strategies resulting from globalized confusion resulting from the economic crisis, with special attention on the economic root causes of the current regional uprisings. The program will include discussions on energy and green technology, the impact of sports on regional business, and the role of franchising in the regional economy.

“One of the greatest exports of the United States has been the legal structure and business tactics of franchising that has created jobs in the emerging markets of the world,” said Jonathan Solish, Partner, Bryan Cave. “Our goal is to provide the conference attendees with practical examples of how franchising can be employed within the region to create the climate necessary for long term economic development and opportunity.”

Doha Conference History

Since the conference began in 2001, keynote speakers and attendees have included President William Jefferson Clinton; UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon; Former NATO Commander Wesley Clark; Former French President Jacques Chirac; and Amr Moussa, Secretary General of the Arab League. Attendees at the 10th Annual conference, held last year in June, included Queen Rania Al Abdullah of Jordan; President Tarja Halonen of Finland; Prime Minister Gordon Bajnai of Hungary; Former President of Lebanon Amin Gemayel; Former Prime Minister of the Netherlands and President of the Club of Madrid Wim Kok; and Former U.S. Senator Mel Martinez.

Scheduled speakers at this year’s conference include:

  • Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al Thani – Emir of the State of Qatar
  • Sheikh Hamad Bin Jassim Bin Jabr Al Thani – Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs
  • Valery Giscard d’Estaing – Former President of the French Republic
  • Mikhail Gorbachev – Former President of the Soviet Union
  • Adolf Ogi – Former President of Switzerland
  • Sir David Frost
  • Jim Brown – NFL Hall of Fame Running Back
  • Josh Elbaum – Managing Director, Media Investment Group
  • Joanna Hayes – Olympic Gold Medalist in Track & Field
  • Colin Kahl – U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for the Middle East
  • Michael Nacht – Former Undersecretary of Defense for Global Affairs
  • Vali Nasr – Professor of International Politics, Tufts University
  • Michael Seid – Managing Director, MSA Worldwide
  • Bassem Shabb – Member of Parliament, Lebanon
  • Jonathan Solish – Partner, Bryan Cave
  • Kok Song – Managing director of the Government of Singapore Investment Corporation
  • Steven L. Spiegel – Director, Center for Middle East Development and Professor of Political Science, UCLA
  • Hung Tran – Deputy Managing Director of the Institute of International Finance
  • Kiki Vandeweghe – NBA Star and Team Executive
  • Andres Velasco – Former Finance Minister of Chile, Professor, Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University
  • Maysoom Zoubi – Secretary General, Minister of Water and Irrigation in Jordan

For information about MSA Worldwide, please contact Theresa Huszka, Senior Consultant, at or (330) 714-5141.

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