Spain-based expat publishes book about doing business with Fidel Castro

Published:  11 Jul at 2 PM
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Tagged: Visas, Caribbean
An expat author in the southern Spanish province of Granada has published his memoires about doing business in Cuba at a time when he was working alongside Fidel Castro.

French-born Michel Villand revealed that the pair were so close that Castro was even a guest of honour when he opened his bakery chain – Pain de Paris – after arriving in the Cuban capital Havana in 1994.

Villand, 74, said power politics, economics, revolution, black magic and eroticism all featured in My Partner Fidel Castro, with the book providing a never-before-seen look at the communist dictator’s regime and how it affected those living in the Caribbean nation.

The tale takes place during a time the country was struggling with an economic crisis and the government was looking for overseas investment, despite the fact foreign nationals were not permitted to be a main shareholder.

Villand, who now resides in Montefrio with his Cuban wife, arrived in the island nation with $US3m of investment capital more than 20 years ago to take up his new venture, and he hopes his book can help other would be businessmen rushing to invest in the new-look Cuba.

He noted that what they accomplished in 1994 would be tough to replicate these days, but not impossible. He explained that two essential qualities to prove yourself were patience and tenacity, adding that his book showed how to set about things.
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