Conspiracy theorists stand by: Bilderberg, the world’s least secret conference, is happening on Thursday

Here’s who is going, and what you are allowed to know about it

On Thursday, the top secret annual Bilderberg conference is to be held in Telfs-Buchen in Austria.

In case you’re not familiar with the world’s most famous secret conference, then you need to crawl out from beneath the rock you’ve been hiding under, strap a pair of x-ray specs to your face, and do a quick Google search.

Actually, don’t bother. So secret are these annual meetings, that weeks before they even begin, the Bilderberg group publishes the list of guests, the topics under discussion and they even tell everybody exactly where and when it is all going down.

However, like with many private meetings, journalists are not allowed in. Well, a few are, but they are not allowed to talk about it afterwards. Because of this fearsome regime, Bilderberg has gained a reputation for being the key meeting at which an exclusive cadre of the global elite plot how to take over and rule the planet. It is catnip for conspiracy theorists and nutters who find groups of rich people and politicians frantically exciting.

The secret conference was first held at the Hotel de Bilderberg in the Netherlands in 1954, and since then it’s been held in various hotels in various countries. In 2013, Bilderberg came to Watford.

Who is going this year?

Michael Oleary crazy ryanair man

Michael “Illuminati” O’Leary of budget airline Ryanair

Well, there are a few names you may be familiar with. Chancellor George Osborne is going, as is the former shadow chancellor Ed Balls – presumably because Labour’s current shadow chancellor (someone called Chris Leslie), hasn’t made much of an impression on the global stage yet.

Who else, well, there’s Rona Fairhead, the BBC Trust chairman, HSBC chairman Douglas Flint, US politician Henry Kissinger, the mad one from Ryanair, Michael O’Leary, some blokes from Goldman Sachs, and various other bankers, ministers, tech wizards, oil tycoons, and journalists.

We’re not going to find out what they say, but below is a full list of attendees. Studying this will allow us to wonder at the possible conversations and meetings between delegates: What dastardly scheme might Niall Ferguson, professor of history at Harvard University hatch in collaboration with, say, Ann Dowling, president of the Royal Academy of Engineering? A history of engineering? Or perhaps they might try to engineer history. Who knows. These are powerful people.


Bilderberg 2015, the list of attendees to the secret conference in full:

· Henri de Castries,  AXA Group, Chairman and CEO

· Paul M.Achleitner,  Deutsche Bank, Chairman of the Supervisory Board

· Marcus Agius,  PA Consulting Group, Non-Executive Chairman

· Thomas Ahrenkiel, Danish Intelligence Service (DDIS), Director

· John R. Allen, US Department of State, Special Presidential Envoy for the Global Coalition to Counter ISIL

· Roger C. Altman, Evercore, Executive Chairman

· Anne Applebaum, Legatum Institute, Director of Transitions Forum

· Matti Apunen, Finnish Business and Policy Forum EVA, Director

· Zoë Baird, Markle Foundation, CEO and President

· Ed Balls, Labour Party, Former Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer 

· Francisco Pinto Balsemão, Impresa SGPS, Chairman

· José M. Barroso, European Commission, Former President

· Nicolas Baverez, Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, Partner, 

· René Benko, Founder, SIGNA Holding

· Franco Bernabè,  FB Group, Chairman

· Ben van Beurden, Royal Dutch Shell, CEO

· Laurent Bigorgne, Institut Montaigne, Director

· Laurence Boone, French government, Special Adviser on Financial and Economic Affairs to the President

· Ana Botín, Banco Santander, Chairman

· Richard Svein Brandtzæg, Norsk Hydro, President and CEO

· Oscar Bronner, Standard Verlagsgesellschaft, Publisher

· William Burns, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, President

· Patrick Calvar, DGSI, Director General

· Henri de Castries, Bilderberg Meetings, Chairman; AXA Group, Chairman and CEO

· Juan Luis Cebrián, Grupo PRISA, Executive Chairman

· Edmund Clark, TD Bank Group, Retired Executive

· Benoît Coeuré, European Central Bank, Member of the Executive Board

· Andrew Coyne, National Post (Canada), Editor, Editorials and Comment

· Mikael L. Damberg, Swedish government, Minister for Enterprise and Innovation

· Karel De Gucht, Belgian government, Former EU Trade Commissioner, State Minister

· Thomas E. Donilon, Former U.S. National Security Advisor; O’Melveny & Myers, Partner and Vice Chair

· Mathias Döpfner, Axel Springer, CEO

· Ann Dowling, Royal Academy of Engineering, President

· Regina Dugan, Google, Vice President for Engineering, Advanced Technology and Projects

· Trine Eilertsen, Aftenposten, Political Editor,

· Merete Eldrup, TV 2 Danmark A/S, CEO

· John Elkann, EXOR, Chairman and CEO; Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, Chairman

· Thomas Enders, Airbus Group, CEO

· Mary Erdoes, JP Morgan Asset Management, CEO

· Rona Fairhead, BBC Trust, Chairman

· Ulrik Federspiel, Haldor Topsøe, Executive Vice President

· Martin S. Feldstein, NBER President Emeritus; Harvard University, Professor of Economics

· Niall Ferguson, Harvard University, Professor of History, Gunzberg Center for European Studies

· Heinz Fischer, Austrian government, Federal President

· Douglas Flint,  HSBC, Group Chairman

· Christoph Franz, F. Hoffmann-La Roche, Chairman of the Board

· Louise O. Fresco, Wageningen University and Research Centre, President and Chairman Executive Board

· Kenneth Griffin, Citadel Investment, Founder and CEO

· Lilli Gruber, “Otto e mezzo”, La7 TV, Executive Editor and Anchor

· Sergei Guriev, Sciences Po, Professor of Economics

· Gönenç Gürkaynak, ELIG Law Firm (Turkey), Managing Partner

· Alfred Gusenbauer, Former Chancellor of the Republic of Austria

· Victor Halberstadt, Leiden University, Professor of Economics

· Erich Hampel, UniCredit Bank Austria, Chairman

· Demis Hassabis, Google DeepMind, Vice President of Engineering

· Wolfgang Hesoun, Siemens Austria, CEO

· Philipp Hildebrand, BlackRock, Vice Chairman

· Reid Hoffman, LinkedIn, Co-Founder and Executive Chairman

· Wolfgang Ischinger, Munich Security Conference, Chairman, 

· Jacobs Kenneth, Lazard, Chairman and CEO

· Julia Jäkel, Gruner + Jahr, CEO

· James A. Johnson, Johnson Capital Partners, Chairman

· Alain Juppé, Mayor of Bordeaux, Former Prime Minister

· Joe Kaeser, Siemens AG, President and CEO

· Alex Karp, Palantir Technologies, CEO

· Gilles Kepel, Sciences Po, University Professor

· John KerrScottish Power, Deputy Chairman

· Ilhan Kesici, Turkish Parliament, MP

· Henry Kissinger, Kissinger Associates, Chairman

· Klaus Kleinfeld, Alcoa, Chairman and CEO

· Klaas Knot, De Nederlandsche Bank, President

· Mustafa Koç, Koç Holding, Chairman

· Henry Kravis, Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co., Co-Chairman and Co-CEO

· Marie-Josée Kravis, Hudson Institute, Senior Fellow and Vice Chair

· André Kudelski, Kudelski Group, Chairman and CEO

· Kurt Lauk, Globe Capital Partners, President

· Carola Lemne, The Confederation of Swedish Enterprise, CEO

· Stuart Levey, HSBC, Chief Legal Officer

· Ursula von der Leyen, German government, Minister of Defence

· Thomas Leysen, KBC Group, Chairman of the Board of Directors

· Shiraz Maher, King’s College London, Senior Research Fellow, ICSR

· Christina Markus Lassen, Danish government, Head of Department, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Security Policy and Stabilisation DNK

· Jessica Mathews, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Distinguished Fellow

· James Mattis, Distinguished Visiting Fellow, Hoover Institution, Stanford University USA

· Pierre Maudet, Vice-President of the State Council, Department of Security, Police and the Economy of Geneva CHE

· David I. McKay, President and CEO, Royal Bank of Canada CAN

· Nuray Mert, Columnist, Professor of Political Science, Istanbul University TUR

· Jim Messina, CEO, The Messina Group USA

· Charles Michel, Prime Minister BEL

· John Micklethwait, Editor-in-Chief, Bloomberg LP USA

· Zanny Minton Beddoes, Editor-in-Chief, The Economist GBR

· Mario Monti, Senator-for-life; President, Bocconi University ITA

· Leena Mörttinen, Executive Director, The Finnish Family Firms Association FIN

· Craig Mundie, J. Principal, Mundie & Associates USA

· Heather Munroe-Blum, Chairperson, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board CAN

· Princess Beatrix of the Netherlands

· Michael O’Leary, CEO, Ryanair Plc IRL

· George Osborne, First Secretary of State and Chancellor of the Exchequer GBR

· Soli Özel, Columnist, Haberturk Newspaper; Senior Lecturer, Kadir Has University TUR

· Dimitri Papalexopoulos, Group CEO, Titan Cement Co. GRC

· Catherine Pégard, President, Public Establishment of the Palace, Museum and National Estate of Versailles FRA

· Richard Perle, N. Resident Fellow, American Enterprise Institute USA

· David H. Petraeus, Chairman, KKR Global Institute USA

· Panagiotis Pikrammenos, Honorary President of The Hellenic Council of State GRC

· Heather Reisman, M. Chair and CEO, Indigo Books & Music Inc. CAN

· Gianfelice Rocca, Chairman, Techint Group ITA

· Gerhard Roiss, CEO, OMV Austria AUT

· Robert E. Rubin, Co Chair, Council on Foreign Relations; Former Secretary of the Treasury USA

· Mark Rutte, Prime Minister NLD

· Karim Sadjadpour, Senior Associate, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace USA

· Pedro Sánchez Pérez-Castejón, Leader, Partido Socialista Obrero Español PSOE ESP

· John Sawers, Chairman and Partner, Macro Advisory Partners GBR

· Selin Sayek Böke, Vice President, Republican People’s Party TUR

· Eric E. Schmidt, Executive Chairman, Google Inc. USA

· Rudolf Scholten, CEO, Oesterreichische Kontrollbank AG AUT

· Jean-Dominique Senard, CEO, Michelin Group FRA

· Karl Sevelda, CEO, Raiffeisen Bank International AG AUT

· Jens Stoltenberg, Secretary General, NATO INT

· Alexander Stubb, Minister of Finance FIN

· Katrin Suder, Deputy Minister of Defense DEU

· Peter D. Sutherland, UN Special Representative; Chairman, Goldman Sachs International IRL

· Carl-Henric Svanberg, Chairman, BP plc; Chairman, AB Volvo SWE

· Olaug Svarva, CEO, The Government Pension Fund Norway NOR

· Peter A. Thiel, President, Thiel Capital USA

· Loukas Tsoukalis, President, Hellenic Foundation for European and Foreign Policy GRC

· Ahmet Üzümcü, Director-General, Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons INT

· António M. Vitorino, Partner, Cuetrecasas, Concalves Pereira, RL PRT

· Jacob Wallenberg, Chairman, Investor AB SWE

· Vin Partner Weber, Mercury LLC USA

· Martin H. Wolf, Chief Economics Commentator, The Financial Times GBR

· James D. Wolfensohn, Chairman and CEO, Wolfensohn and Company USA

· Robert B. Zoellick, Chairman, Board of International Advisors, The Goldman Sachs Group USA

Now read

Readers' comments (1)

  • It's quite astonishing, Harry, that you don't see any problem with our elected representatives, who should be answerable to the UK electorate, participating in a secret conference with powerful vested interests, whose workings are hidden from public scrutiny.

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