From Greece to Scotland via BT and EE: What got us talking this week

Catherine Neilan
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It's all Greek to us (Source: Getty)

It was all Greek to us this week

Specifically, Greek finance minister Yanis Varoufakis, who visited London as part of a Europe-wide charm offensive to support his plan for solving the small matter of the country's giant debt.
Free market think tank Adam Smith Institute gave its backing to his debt restructuring plans, which Varoufakis himself found pleasantly surprising.
But despite this, official talks reached an awkward impasse with Germany and as we ended the week, the Syriza-led government was preparing itself for further talks on Wednesday.
British politics also dominated – and if you think it's going to go away before May 7, you've got another thing coming.
There was good news for those championing equality in the boardroom, as it was revealed that Britain's biggest companies are edging towards that all important target of 25 per cent. But, as we discovered, not all companies are going in the right direction.
Arguably the biggest business story of the week was the news that BT has agreed to buy EE for £12.5bn. But BT will be under investigation by the UK's merger and regulatory authorities for a year, meaning the deal won't be complete until sometime next year.
Looking back at the start of the week, your office was probably quieter than usual thanks to National Sickie Day. But chances are your skiving colleagues were actually being much more productive than you might want to give them credit for.

Leisurely reads

Next weekend it's Valentine's Day and retailers are hoping that shoppers will be whipped up into a Fifty Shades of Grey frenzy. The UK is getting hot under the collar and things are only going to get saucier.
There's a lot that is said about the rising class of luxury spenders in China – but what do we know about their actual spending habits? Here are four things we found out.
Also this week we met with DJ Gilles Peterson and talked with him about why Ibiza is dead and where the next big thing on the music scene is coming from.

Great reads from elsewhere

This report from the Economist makes for grim reading if you're planning to spend any decent amount of time in China, where air quality is so bad it is shaving years off people's lives. But we were surprised to learn that it's actually even worse in India.
Jay-Z's not a businessman, he's a business, man. And the FT has a great piece looking at how rappers' sense of entrepreneurship can teach us the value of human capital.
The news that there is a sequel (ish) to Harper Lee's classic To Kill A Mockingbird was something of a literary rollercoaster this week. First we were excited. Then we worried she was being taken advantage of. Now we're just looking forward to reading Go Set a Watchman. New York Magazine has an interview with Lee's editor which puts some of those rumours to rest.

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