Wednesday 25 August 2010 7:49 pm


CELEBRITY endorsement works, at least if the celebrity involved is a glamorous sportsman like Usain Bolt, who yesterday announced the biggest deal ever, to help Puma flog its pumps and T-shirts. But can you really imagine Crispin Odey, the permanently pin-striped hedge fund guru, as a brand ambassador? Well, he is. The new branch of the Union Market organic grocery store in Fulham – a company that is run by Odey’s pal Tony Bromovsky, and which the fund manager has invested in – has added an “Odey Sausage” to its range, made from prime Middle White rare breed pork. This raises several questions. Firstly, what sort of person buys a sausage because it is named after a hedge fund manager? And secondly, could this be the start of a trend for Odey? Can we expect to see Crispin Duck pancakes on Mayfair menus soon? But most importantly, will his wife, Nichola Pease, who works at investment manager JO Hambro, bring out her own range of peas to go with her husband’s bangers? Surely an opportunity too good to be missed. BARKING BANKERS I’VE never yet set foot in a Metro Bank branch, but judging by a press release they sent out yesterday they sound like a cross between a particularly gaudy funfair and an EasyJet check-in desk in Magaluf, with some mild hallucinogens thrown in. And dogs. Dogs everywhere. A press release announcing the launch of three new branches breathlessly boasts that customers will be “greeted by three days of free giveaways including free breakfasts, smoothies, and popcorn… stilt walkers, musicians, jugglers and shoe shiners”. The branches will all have “the Metro Bank Magic Money Machine™” and offer “A friendly welcome to dogs and their owners, with water bowls and dog biscuits on hand for man’s best friend – dogs rule at Metro Bank!” Hmm. Somehow I’m not sure I want the people who run my bank acccount to be having quite so much fun. POLAR BEARS BEFORE PROFIT? Just one day after Cairn Energy enthustically talked up its prospects in Greenland, a press release pops up in The Capitalist’s inbox saying it’s pulling out of not just Greeland – land of polar bears – but Nepal and Bangladesh to boot. The reason – profitability is secondary to ensuring a survivable future for humanity – according to the release. Putting the environment before investor returns for an oil company seems a tad unlikely. A quick call to Cairn confirms that it is indeed a hoax release from a mystery party that has hacked into its systems. “It’s simply not true,” a spokeswoman confirms. WHAT’S IN A NAME? WHEN the birth of the Camerons’ daughter was announced, speculation about the name was rife. Borisina? Nichola? Nobody copuld have expected Florence Rose Endellion. What can we make of it? That third, Cornish name sounds like an investment fund, but could it also be an attempt to woo Cornish voters? After all, the south west is a hotbed of Lib Dem seats, and anything the Tories can do to make headway has got to help. If he wants to keep that part of the country yellow, the deputy PM will have to get procreating, and fast. AH BORIS, what have you started? Bicycles are a far commoner sight in the City these days, and now the City of London is trying to encourage two-wheeled transport. It is calling on senior managers to take part in sponsored cycle-rides as part of European Mobility Week, 16-22 September. Each manager will be asked to raise £5,000, for Re-Cycle, which distributes second-hand bikes in Africa. For more info, and to take the first step to seeing your boss tottering about on a bike, see