Monte dei Paschi to give state €4bn
Shareholders of Monte dei Paschi di Siena, Italy’s third-largest bank by assets, have given the go ahead to a €5bn (£4.05bn) capital raising in a step that effectively lifts the threat of nationalisation from the bank. In a turbulent meeting, Monte Paschi shareholders voted overwhelmingly to back the capital raising which will allow it to pay back a first tranche of €4.1bn in state bail out bonds. Brussels had made clear that without the capital raising the state would have to convert its bailout bonds into equity.The approval of the capital increase, which is already underwritten by a pool of 10 international banks, caps a volatile two years for the bank.
Study lifts UK up productivity ranks
The UK productivity rate is better than that of all other members of the G7 economies apart from the US, according to a new study looking at 25 years of manufacturing. The findings, published in a report by Cranfield University, contrast with other data that show the UK falling behind its international competitors.
Sale of Drambuie to tap thirst
Drambuie, the Scottish liqueur that kept up the spirits of Bonnie Prince Charlie, is to be sold for the first time in a century. The MacKinnon family that owns the brand, can hope to capitalise on the booming cocktail market and a thirst for heritage brands from Asian companies looking for international expansion.
Former Icesave boss clinches buyout
Alchemy Partners yesterday clinched the purchase of the tiny Fareham-based bank Hampshire Trust. The bank is run by Mark Sismey-Durrant, who was managing director of Icesave when it failed in 2008.
Aldi seeks staff amid expansion
Aldi needs to recruit 5,500 new staff by the end of this year as it races to keep up with demand in its discount supermarkets. The German retailer said it is desperate for workers as it pushes ahead with plans to open 55 new stores and to expand many of its existing 525 outlets, and needs to add employees to improve customer service.
The Daily Telegraph
GE boss expects to buy Alstom
General Electric’s CEO has said he expects his $17bn (£10.1bn) offer for part of France’s Alstom to be accepted, despite political opposition and a potential counter-bid from Siemens. “This deal is good for France. It’s good for GE. It's good for Alstom,” Jeff Immelt said at a conference.
Green Deal Finance firm “misled”
The finance company for the government’s Green Deal scheme breached advertising rules with misleading claims about savings on offer, in the latest setback for the scheme. The Advertising Standards Authority ruled there had been breaches by the Green Deal Finance Company.
THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
ZeniMax sues Oculus
A Maryland-based video game company sued Oculus VR and its founder yesterday, claiming it owns the rights to technology behind the firm Facebook has acquired for $2bn (£1.18bn). In a statement, Oculus said, “The lawsuit filed by ZeniMax has no merit whatsoever.”
Airbnb to hand over user data
Airbnb reached a deal yesterday with the New York attorney general inviting more regulatory scrutiny of its home-rental service in one of its largest markets and raises concerns about how it handles the private data of its users. The data will be used to identify individuals for investigation.