Another jam-packed Davos has come to an end, and with it, numerous business deals secured - it is understood that AT&T CEO, Randall Stephenson, has discussed potential European acquisitions with the region's top telecommunications official, Neelie Kroes - as well as policy ideas between governments thrashed out behind closed doors.
Unlike in previous years, this meeting of the World Economic Forum felt somewhat more relaxed given the broadly positive trajectory of the global economy. Talk is slowly turning to recovery which is really great to see - there's a real sense that change for the better is just around the corner.
Despite the 'calmer' circumstances, it was still a very intense few days for journalists chasing down stories and interviewing politicians and business leaders. I was fortunate enough to get to interview over 50 guests last week, ranging from former Prime Minister Tony Blair through to OECD Secretary-General, José Angel Gurria as well as other prominent CEO's of some of the world's biggest companies.
Officially, Davos only lasts for four days in total but business delegates tend to hang around for much longer on the sidelines, extending their stay to continue the networking, taking advantage of the fact that so many business figures from all corners of the Earth are gathered in one place. As one executive I spoke with last week put it, attending Davos is very beneficial because it offers a way to travel the globe to do business without the jetlag.
The opportunities that Davos creates for tie-ups, mergers and acquisitions are pretty mind-blowing when you think about it. Last year, Maurice Levy, CEO of advertising firm, Publicis struck up a casual conversation with Omnicom Inc. CEO John Wren. That casual conversation led to a merger which will now see the two bosses form the world's biggest advertising group with a market capitalisation of over $35 billion.
And that's not the only big deal to happen as a result of the annual meeting. In 2011, for example, pharmaceutical company Sanofi made significant steps in its eventual $20 billion takeover of American biotech company Genzyme Inc.
That said, not all delegates view Davos as a place for such opportunities. Take Enrique K. Razon Jr., for instance, the Filipino billionaire and Chairman and CEO of the Manila-listed company, International Container Terminal Services. The businessman, who also runs a large and successful casino operation, has publically shunned Davos, a place he describes as "loaded with bloated self-importance." Contrary to the upbeat outlook on the global economy from the majority of attendees, he has warned against too much optimism, suggesting that for far too long, business has been run by monetary policy and is being cushioned by a liquidity bubble that will inevitably burst.
Regardless of your viewpoint, Davos remains an important annual event which will continue to attract a healthy blend of political and business savvy people, whose actions will shape agendas at a macro and micro level for years to come.
Francine was reporting live from Davos for Bloomberg Television. You can view all the action from this year's event via:
• Bloomberg Television in the UK: Sky 502; Virgin Media 609; Freesat 208
• Bloomberg TV+ app for Apple iPad
• Apple TV
Embeddable video is available here: Bloomberg.com/video/davos-videos/