Roca Team slump to first domestic defeat

AS Monaco Basketball’s seven-game winning run in the Betclic Elite ended at the hands of Dijon on Sunday (84-95), although Sasa Obradovic’s side remain top of the table. 

Post-match, Obradovic was highly critical of his side’s performance, which he described as “unacceptable.” The Roca Team were in difficulty in the defensive phases from the first minute, conceding 26 points in the first quarter alone in a performance that lacked intensity from the Monégasques.

Monaco had under 48 hours to prepare for the tie, having wrapped up victory against Red Star Belgrade at the Salle Gaston Médecin late on Friday night. But those attending Sunday’s game in the Principality saw a different side to the Roca Team, not in a positive sense.

Mike James (20) featured in the heavily rotated team, finishing as Monaco’s joint-top scorer on the day, Yakuba Outtara (20). However, their points-scoring efforts weren’t sufficient as Monaco couldn’t stop bleeding points at the other end.

Monaco managed to close the gap to Dijon on multiple occasions before the underdogs finally pulled away at the end (84-95). “For sure, the time was limited to prepare for this match against Dijon. But that isn’t an excuse, and what I saw wasn’t acceptable. We have to learn from this defeat, and take those lessons into the future,” said Obradovic.

Monaco now have nearly a full week to prepare for their next match, which takes place in Valencia on Friday, with the Euroleague top spot within the Roca Team’s grasp.


Photo source: AS Monaco Basketball

Scientific Centre of Monaco signs agreement with Green Cross France at COP 27

The Scientific Centre of Monaco has teamed up with the Green Cross of France and the Territories by signing a three-year agreement to link the combined issues of human resilience and the oceans.  

The Scientific Centre of Monaco (CSM) and the Green Cross of France and the Territories have partnered up on projects before, but this is the first time the two entities have signed a formal agreement, and it happened at the COP 27 in Egypt.

Their collaboration will focus on four specific points. The first is the development of the theme of Human Resilience and the Ocean, concentrating on issues related to health, the preservation of the coastline, coastline integrity, carbon cycles, water,

biodiversity, ecological continuities, and human activities. They will also explore developing economic models to face the impact of climate change on tourism, the restoration of ecosystems and the promotion of healthy environments for humans. Additionally, they hope to get their word out on an international level by creating cooperation between themselves and public and economic leaders. Finally, they want to share knowledge in terms of environmental preservation, climate change, ecological transition and quality of life.

“Being able to permanently connect the protection of marine and coastal life, the climate emergency and economic issues helps decision-makers understand the impact of their actions, and inaction, and sheds light on the possible choices,” says Denis Allemand, Scientific Director of the Monaco Scientific Centre. “By strengthening the links between science, economy, ecosystems and civil society, we contribute to raising awareness of the importance of acting now, but also to identifying and spreading the most virtuous models of action.”

The Green Cross of France and the Territories is the French representative of the Green Cross, a network of non-governmental organisations (NGOs) for advocacy and projects created by Mikhail Gorbachev in 1993. The association contributes to actions that promote the ecological transformation of societies, including water and the ocean, food, sustainable cities and territories, the circular economy, cooperation and solidarity.

The 2022 United Nations Climate Change Conference, more commonly referred to COP27, is the 27th United Nations Climate Change conference and is being held from 6th November until 18th November 2022 in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt.


Monaco dives into ocean role at COP27


Change afoot at the classic Café de Paris

café de paris reopen

The famed Café de Paris in Place du Casino is perhaps one of the most iconic Monte Carlo institutions. Today it is in the midst of major modernisation works. 

When Jean-Luc Biamonti, the head of Société des Bains de Mer (SBM), spoke to reporters earlier this year about the project, he fondly referred to the Café de Paris as “the most beautiful square metreage in the world”. 

It is an iconic address in Monaco and a cornerstone of the evolution of the Principality from its humble beginnings into one of the world’s most exclusive destinations; a journey that gained momentum in the 1860s with the development of the Hôtel de Paris and Casino de Monte-Carlo. 

The Café de Paris is currently undergoing major renovations that are expected to cost something in the region of 40 million euros.  

The historical site is being reimagined, with the creation of a second floor and an awe-inspiring new bar on the ground floor – the “heart of the venue”. The new space will allow the establishment to host some 300 guests inside and an additional 200 on the terrace from breakfast to late into the evening.  

But despite the physical changes, the glass-fronted brasserie will retain all of its soul and signature elements, from the classic French menu – think foie gras, andouillettes and tartare – to the stained-glass zodiac windows.  

“As we were planning, we constantly kept in mind the venue’s past, while also looking forward to the future. A real exercise in style! [Much] more than a straight-forward renovation,” says the brasserie’s manager, Éric Gorjux. 

Works are due to wrap up in time for the peak summer season 2023, but patrons hoping to sample the delights of the Café de Paris only have to walk across the famous square to the Hôtel de Paris, where chef Franck Lafon has set up in the Salle Empire until he gets his brand-new kitchen back next year. 



Photo source: Perrot & Richard Architectes / Alexandre Giraldi

Prince Albert: on tour in the US

As part of a whistle-stop American tour, Prince Albert II visited the nation’s capital of Washington DC to take in two exhibitions: one revolving around his mother and the other a photographic exhibition put on by the US branch of the Prince Albert II Foundation.   

Early on his trip this month, Prince Albert was invited to attend a photo exhibit at the Hall of States put on by the American wing of his Foundation, the Monaco Embassy in Washington D.C and the Kennedy Center, under the theme of Man – Wildlife: Crossed Destinies, Shared Territories.  

Kathleen Ricker, winner of the 2021 Environmental Photography Prize for her photo Gorilla by the Water, was invited to the event and had the opportunity to speak with the prince.  

Prince Albert was escorted by Denise Campbell Bauer, the Ambassador of the United States to France and Monaco, Maguy Maccario Doyle, the Ambassador of the Principality of Monaco to the United States and Canada, and Rufus Gifford, Chief of Protocol of the US Department of State.  

Photo credit: Zaid Hamid / Embassy of Monaco

Afterward, the Prince was treated to another exhibition on 2nd November: Grace of Monaco, Princess in Dior, at the Hillwood Museum. The show, which was first presented in 2019 at the Christian Dior Museum in Granville, made its North American debut in this beautiful institution founded by businesswoman, philanthropist and collector Marjorie Merriweather Post. 

The exhibit portrays the unique relationship forged between the Princess and the former artistic director of Dior, Marc Bohan, through clothing, accessories and photos.  


Photos: Princely couple step out in NY for Princess Grace Awards


Photo credit: Zaid Hamid / Embassy of Monaco

Youngest Formula E race-winner joins Monaco Sports Group

Three-time Formula E winner Maximilian Günther has joined Monaco Sports Group (MSG) for the 2023 Formula E season, partnering up with Edoardo Mortara who came close to winning last season’s championship. 

Günther replaces Lucas Di Grassi, a former Formula E champion, who last year won one race for MSG, formerly known as ROKiT Venturi Racing. Günther comes into to support Mortara, who has been retained by the Monégasuqe team. 

The Swiss driver finished second in the drivers’ standings in Season seven, and last year finished third in a season punctuated by four impressive race victories. He will be hoping to add to his six wins and 13 podiums in his sixth season with MSG. 

“Since joining in season four, the team has become home for me and I’m really happy to continue my journey with such a collection of hard-working and talented individuals into season nine and beyond,” said Mortara in a press release. 

To partner him, MSG have looked to the future, bringing in Günther, who is the youngest winner of a Formula E race. The team have described him as “one of motorsport’s most promising talents”.

“I’m very happy to be joining the MSG family alongside Edo ahead of Season nine. I have a lot of admiration for the team and their achievements in recent seasons… I believe that [Mortara and I] will make a formidable team and I know that we will work hard together to ensure we extract the maximum performance together with the team. I can’t wait to get this exciting journey started,” said Günther. 

Season nine, which will herald the Gen3 era, gets underway in Mexico City on January 14th, with MSG looking to go one better and secure their first world championship in 2023.


Photo by Monaco Sports Group 

Ian Sosso re-elected to board of EBAN

Ian Sosso has been re-elected for a third time to the board of EBAN, the Brussels pan-European representative for the early-stage investor community.

Monegasque Ian Sosso, winner of the 2019 award for best Angel investor in Europe and Founder and Managing Partner of Monte Carlo Capital, also recently participated in the annual European Angel Investor Summit in Brussels. The event, organised by EBAN, is the main Angel investor event of the year in Europe and was attended by 500+ delegates, including many attendees from various branches of the European Commission.

This year, the emphasis was on deep tech and university spin off, topics of particular interest to Sosso and the subject of a white paper he wrote.

Ian Sosso gave a keynote which was a concentrated version of another white paper he wrote last year called, ‘Why we all need to become early-stage tech investors to remain relevant, (and why it is particularly so for family offices and their principals)’.

Sosso also participated in panel discussions titled ‘Accelerating Tech Transfer from Labs to Market’ and ‘University Spinoff Best Practices’.

Monte Carlo Capital is a group of HWNI and family principals investing as a syndicate in early stage business in Europe and the US.