Unemployment is rising and companies are going to the wall as the economic turmoil continues to inflict damage across the globe.
But one organisation is thriving. Records recently filed at Companies House show Tony Blair Inc is going from strength to strength. They reveal that income channelled through a complex network of firms and partnerships controlled by Blair rose more than 40% last year to more than £12m. Of this, almost £10m was paid for "management services".
The money was transferred via a network of firms and financial vehicles.
Accountancy experts are questioning the arcane nature of the network's finances, which makes it difficult to trace where its money is coming from, or where it is being spent.
Accounts for Windrush Ventures, an obscure company that operates under the trading name "the Office of Tony Blair", suggest 2011 has been a successful year for the former prime minister. Pre-tax profits rose from £729,000 to £1.1m.
The accounts reveal that the company received "remuneration of £9,837,000 in connection with management services" from partnership controlled by Blair.
Blair is legitimately taking advantage of laws allowing him to limit what his companies and partnerships must disclose.