REMEMBER the man who, last year, decided to mend his broken heart after a divorce by selling his entire life on eBay, house, car, job and all?<br /><br />Well, one enterprising City boy has decided to go one better – he’s started a competition for entrants to “win a new life”, and stands to make millions in profit if everything goes to plan.<br /><br />Andy Paul, a 39 year old equities trader, has put up his £1.1m country mansion in Kent, £160,000 Aston Martin DBS and £200,000 Sealine 35 Sport luxury motorboat up as prizes in the competition, which charges £20 per entry. With up to 200,000 entries allowed, that’s going to net him a profit of just over £2.5m (if The Capitalist’s mathematical skills are up to scratch and all the tickets are sold). And the crafty number-cruncher has even got a contingency plan – if less than 50,000 tickets are sold, he’s retaining the right to give out a cash prize instead, up to a maximum of £1m.<br /><br />Despite this show of hard-nosed business acumen, Paul is adamant he’s set up the competition for purely philanthropic reasons, “to give someone a lifestyle he or she has always dreamed of”.<br /><br />And I hear there are plans afoot to expand the business and change more lives if all goes to plan. Paul aims to plough the profits back into buying further assets (villas in the sun and plastic surgery are just a couple of the options under consideration) and putting them up as prizes in future competitions. Sounds like a jolly good wheeze, doesn’t it?<br /><br /><strong>SPORTING SPIRIT</strong><br />The City’s sportier types are starting to sign up in their droves to the CARE 3 Peaks Challenge, which is supported by City A.M. and is taking place on 12-13 September this year.<br /><br />The latest intrepid hikers to join the fray are a group from Bank of America: Ian Pellicena, Mike Wheeler, Andy Burton, Evan Remmes and Steven Humphrey Munday.<br /><br />They will join other teams from the likes of Deloitte and Baker Tilly in the challenge, which aims to raise funds for global anti-poverty charity CARE. It involves scaling Scafell Pike, Ben Nevis and Snowdon, the highest mountains in England, Scotland and Wales, in just 24 hours.<br /><br />“We’re apprehensive, but really looking forward to it – it’s a great challenge for a great cause,” says Pellicena, the Bank of America team leader. “We’d encourage other teams from the City to come and take us on…”<br /><br />The gauntlet is down.<br /><br /><strong>POINT PROVEN</strong><br />A word of warning to the powers that be at Aim. Despite going to every length to ensure that companies listed on the junior market have a fully compliant website, the stock exchange seems to have missed something.<br /><br />Apparently, though the rest of every Aim company’s website needs to be carefully constructed according to regulations, there’s no such rule that applies to the name of the sites themselves.<br /><br />Enter Braemar Group, the property investment firm which has just set up its farmland-focused subsidiary Braemar UK Agricultural Land. <br /><br />“As well as our official domain name, we’ve also registered www.theyrenotmakingitanymore.co.uk, after Mark Twain’s famous quote,” chief executive Marc Duschenes tells me. “That’ll teach’em.” <br /><br />A man with a point to prove, perchance?<br /><br /><strong>MEDIA SHOWDOWN</strong><br />The Capitalist has been keeping an eye on Sainsbury’s latest televised jaunt with interest. But while handsomely-paid supermarket boss Justin King is busy assessing business proposals from a number of his staff, what of his arch rival Sir Stuart Rose, of Marks and Spencer?<br /><br />Both King and Rose are notoriously media-savvy, and both are keen to court plenty of the right kind of “nation’s-favourite” publicity for their firms. So given the fact that King has long been tipped as a contender to relieve Rose of his crown when he finally leaves the firm, is the dapper M&S chief about to hit back with his own carefully-choreographed Channel 4 series?<br /><br />“I’m afraid we really can’t say anything at the moment,” a spokesman tells me, carefully. “Sir Stuart doesn’t comment on his future activity.”<br /><br />A fruitful opportunity to bear in mind, perhaps?<br /><br /><strong>GREEN SHOOTS</strong><br />If there’s a more budget-friendly corporate hospitality option out there to take advantage of these so-called green shoots, The Captialist certainly hasn’t seen it.<br /><br />This Saturday will see the fun-loving City racing set descend on Sandown Park for the annual Irish Day, as they gear up for Royal Ascot next week. £75 per person for a hospitality ticket will buy firms a Premier Enclosure admission for the day and the chance to drink Guinness, dress up and dance to the Irish jig. London’s famous oyster bar, Bentleys Restaurant, will also be decamping to the racecourse for the day – for those who enjoy the slippery little suckers, that is.