New Book: Heaven’s Bankers – Inside the hidden world of Islamic Finance

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Heaven's Bankers - Inside the hidden world of Islamic Finance

Heaven’s Bankers – Inside the hidden world of Islamic Finance

Author: Harris Irfan

ISBN: 9781472105103

Description by Publisher: A trillion dollar financial industry is revolutionising the global economy. Governments and corporations across the Islamic world are increasingly turning to finance that complies with Sharia law in order to fund economic growth. Even in the West, Islamic finance is rapidly becoming an important alternative source of funding at a time when the conventional finance industry is reeling from the effects of the financial crisis.

From its origins in the seventh century, Islamic finance has sought to develop core ethical principles that are based in the foundations of Islam and Shari’a. By engaging critically with the complexities of international finance, it has evolved and adapted into a world emerging from the economic and moral aftermath of a global financial crisis. But with an increasing Western interest, is it able to remain true to the principles of its faith? Can it maintain its ideals of social justice? Or is Islamic finance guilty of the very dangers it seeks to avoid?

In Heaven’s Bankers, Harris Irfan, one of the world’s leading Islamic finance bankers, gives unparalleled insight into the heart of this secretive industry. From his personal experience of working with leading bankers, scholars and lawyers, he debunks the myths of Islamic banking, analyses its greatest deals and looks to the future of a system that has reprioritised the very nature of money itself.

Table of Contents

1. The Quiet Revolutionaries of Masjid Al Samad

2. The Nature of Money

3. The Gentler Face of Londonistan

4. The Rocket Scientists of Duetche Bank and the Billion Dollar Scholar

5. The Skunks Works Specialist

6. The Doomsday Fatawa

7. Standardizing the Industry: Accelerating Chaos or Bringing Order?

8. The Credit Crisis and Islamic Finance

9. When Sukuk Go Bad

10. The Regulator Strikes Back

11. Arbitraging Islam: The Great Vampire Squid Arrives

12. The Future of Islamic Finance

About the Author (Written by the Author, source:

I’m an investment banker who co-founded Deutsche Bank’s Islamic finance team and went on to become global head of Islamic finance for Barclays.  I then founded my own advisory firm, Cordoba Capital, a group company of European Islamic Investment Bank, where I am also managing director responsible for investment banking.  I’ve been an official spokesman on the subject of Islamic finance and have represented my industry and my institution on the BBC, Sky News, CNBC, Bloomberg, Reuters and the Financial Times.

Over the years I turned my hand to motor racing, most latterly in GT and endurance racing.  I was an instructor at the Yas Marina Formula 1 circuit in Abu Dhabi and the Dubai Autodrome, and wrote on motorsport for the Middle East editions of CAR and evo, as well as for Crank & Piston.

I studied physics at Oxford and live in Surrey.  Heaven’s Bankers is my first book. 

Book Reviews

Wall Street Journal

The Independent

The Telegraph

How to connect with Harris Irfan 




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