WAITROSE EYES DUCHY ORIGINALS US PUSH
Waitrose is making its first foray into the US through its Duchy Originals range, the label founded by Prince Charles. The supermarket arm of the employee-owned John Lewis Partnership is talking to North American retailers and distributors about selling Duchy Originals products in US stores.
PENSIONS REGULATOR FACES COURT CHALLENGE
The UK’s pensions regulator is facing a High Court challenge to the global reach of its power to demand a share of the proceeds when a foreign company with an underfunded UK pension scheme is liquidated after insolvency. That power goes to the heart of two of the regulator’s most important obligations: to ensure benefits are paid in full and on time, and to limit claims on the Pension Protection Fund, the safety net for schemes at insolvent companies.
UNILEVER LOOKS TO SELL CHICKEN TONIGHT BRAND
Unilever is to sell its Chicken Tonight brand as it continues to shake up its food portfolio and forge deeper into personal care. The deal comes as the Anglo-Dutch conglomerate agreed to pay $3.7bn for Alberto Culver, the US consumer products group whose brands include TRESemmé and VO5 shampoos.
BLACKSTONE’S DEAL ON PÁTRIA SIGNALS RISING BRAZIL INTEREST
Blackstone, the US investment advisory firm, is taking a 40 per cent stake in Pátria Investimentos, a Brazilian private equity group, in a further sign of the attraction of Brazil’s fast-growing domestic market to foreign investors. The deal comes as private equity and asset management groups are showing more interest in Brazil.
CITIGROUP E-MAILS CITE BAD DECISION ON £2.6BN EMI LOAN
The banker at the centre of Citigroup’s bitter fight with Guy Hands apparently admitted three years ago that its bankrolling of the £4.2 billion buyout of EMI was “a bad decision”. Only months after Terra Firma, Mr Hands’ private equity firm, bought the music group in August 2007 David Wormsley alleged to colleagues that Citigroup’s fixed income division, which lent Hands £2.6bn, “have every intention of making life as difficult as possible for Guy”.
NIGHTHAWK FOUNDERS QUIT
David Bramhill, the founder and managing director of Nighthawk Energy, is stepping down from the board of the oil and gas explorer only weeks after threatening legal action against the users of investor messageboards, for talking the shares down.
The Daily Telegraph
STARBUCKS TO OFFER STAFF NVQS
Baristas at Starbucks will be able to pick up a qualification in making lattes after the coffee chain revealed plans to offer a range of NVQs. The American coffee house said it would serve up the qualifications in customer service and food hygiene from next year in Britain, as part of a multi-million-pound training scheme to improve coffee drinkers’ experience.
ZONG QINGHOU NAMED AS CHINA'S RICHEST MAN
Zong Qinghou, one of China’s most controversial businessmen, who became notorious for outmanoeuvring French food company Danone, has been named the country's richest man. The 64-year-old founder of Wahaha, China's largest drinks company, is worth $12bn (£7.6bn) and tops this year's Hurun Rich List after tripling his fortune in a year.
WALL STREET JOURNAL
UNICREDIT LIKELY TO NAME GHIZZONI AS CEO
UniCredit is expected to name a longtime senior executive with experience outside Italy to run the bank, which ousted its well-known chief executive, Alessandro Profumo, last week, people familiar with the matter said. The bank's board was expected to appoint Federico Ghizzoni as CEO at a meeting Thursday in Warsaw, people familiar with the matter said.
ISTANBUL PRESSES CASE AS WORLD FINANCIAL CENTRE
Turkey’s rapid recovery from the global downturn is giving a new boost to the government's plan to turn Istanbul into an international financial center to rival Dubai or eventually even London, according to Ali Babacan, deputy prime minister for the economy.