STRIP CLUB BOSSES STAKE OUT THEIR TURF

LOOKS like The Capitalist ruffled a few feathers yesterday with a tale about former Spearmint Rhino managing director Simon Warr setting up a new strip club, Platinum Lace, on his previous employer’s territory in the heart of London.

Spearmint Rhino bounded in immediately with a robust defence of its business, which is apparently booming at present despite the break-up of the chain’s out-of-London clubs from its flagship Tottenham Court Road venue last year.

“Like a lot of other companies, Spearmint Rhino was affected by the recession but now the bankers have their bonuses back and the Arabs continue to splash the cash, revenue in the flagship London club is up 33 per cent,” a club spokeswoman informs me breezily. (I’ll take her word for it, twenties tucked into G-strings an’ all.)

But have we touched a raw nerve? Apparently, the club’s success can be “credited to the change in management”, with new vice president John Specht having been flown in a year ago.

Funnily enough, ex-day-to-day boss Warr split from Spearmint founder John Gray on less than friendly terms – and I’m told they’ve now had to get the lawyers involved to iron out their differences.

ELECTION FEVER
They’re sticklers for etiquette over at the City of London Corporation. In pops an email from the organisers of a charity abseil today, proudly stating that property bigwigs taking part include Alderman Michael Bear, “the Lord Mayor elect”.

Not a few minutes goes by before a correction comes rushing in, admitting that Bear hasn’t actually been elected as yet.

Bear – who works as regeneration director at Hammerson – is the “preferred candidate” of the City’s electoral college, though once in a blue moon the liverymen do vote against their superiors. He’s up against David Wootton and Roger Gifford in the election on 29 September.

OFF TO THE STICKS
Comic email of the day: courtesy of private equity group Origo Partners, setting up a corporate finance JV in Mongolia. “This is really quite exciting,” gushes the firm, “as a number of UK bankers have chosen to relocate to Mongolia…” What was that about a mass exodus?

ONE MAN’S JUNK...
A flick through the catalogue for the upcoming Christies auction of Lehman Brothers’ London art, expected to raise around £2m, reveals a familiar sight.

Along with paintings, sculptures and bric-a-brac, the administrators are flogging a few of the bank’s wall plaques and signs – with each expected to fetch up to £3,000. Ebay has been doing a roaring trade in such goods since the collapse, so expect fierce competition among bidders.

WELL CONNECTED
It’s off to pastures new for former Alchemy director Eric Lakin, who left the firm at the end of last year. He’s joined Oakley Capital Corporate Finance as a director tasked with expanding the telecoms and technology practice, after a nine-month break. Not for Lakin the idle life, though: since December he’s been advising in an interim role at venture capital firm DN Capital, as well as training as a certified football coach. Both roles have paid off: as well as his new job, he’s now coaching an under-sevens footy team on which his son plays, as well as the son of Fulham striker Andrew Johnson.