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Thursday, February 26th, 2015


Pressure mounts for reform

SRC boss Lonsdale: ‘Business rates system no longer fit for purpose’

David Lonsdale

Pressure is building on the Scottish government to instigate a root and branch reform of business rates after a new report, backed by a number of business sectors, gave six reasons why the system is “no longer fit for purpose”. The Scottish Retail Consortium is leading a campaign for change and has published Business Rates: Fundamental Reform calling for a new tax system that reduces the barriers to investment and is cheaper to administer. The SRC says its plan would spread the tax burden more equitably and better support growth. A recent surveyRead More

GDP growth for the fourth quarter confirmed at 0.5%, down from 0.7% in previous quarter; investment fallen at sharpest rate for six years

Standard Chartered bank announces Peter Sands chief executive to be replaced by investment banker Bill Winters

Project able to power every home in capital

Renewables firm secures price deal on giant Fife wind farm

A wind farm off the Fife coast capable of powering every home in Edinburgh is among the first recipients of a new pricing agreement that will provide guaranteed payments for the electricity it produces. Mainstream Renewable Power has been awarded a 15-year Contract for Difference (CfD) from the National Grid for the £2 billion project. The 450 megawatt Neart na Gaoithe offshore wind farm, one 11 Scottish farms to secure guarantees,  is located in the Outer Forth Estuary in the North Sea.  The CfD, which was awarded to Mainstream under a competitiveRead More

Online traffic adding to growth

Macfarlane ready to wrap up acquisition in first half of year


Growth in buying goods online is providing a boost to Macfarlane, the Glasgow packaging group, which is close to tying up its first acquisition of the year. Chief executive Peter Atkinson today confirmed today that it had reduced an initial list of 60 potential targets to a shortlist of eight and hopes to seal a deal in the first half. The target companies range in turnover between £4 million and £10m. Macfarlane made three acquisitions just ahead of the 2007/08 financial crash and after calling a “time-out” during the subsequent recessionRead More

Thur City brief: New FTSE100 record; Ladbrokes closing 60 shops

The FTSE100 hit a record closing high tonight, its second new peak in a week, helped by an uplift in Asia-focused bank Standard Chartered which appointed a new chief executive. Investment banker Bill Winters will succeed Peter Sands, giving the shares a 5.4%  boost. Although there was less enthusiasm for RSA (down 4.7%) and Royal Bank of Scotland (4.1% lower), the top index closed 0.2% higher at 6,949.73 points which is a new closing high and near the intraday record high of 6,958.89 points it reached on Tuesday. There is now speculation thatRead More

Edinburgh and Glasgow reach 1m viewers

STV sees rise in advertising revenue on back of new launches

STV catchphrase

STV saw profit and revenue rise on the back of an improved television advertising market which enabled the company to lift its dividend by 300%. It said the newly launched Glasgow and Edinburgh local stations were reaching more than a million viewers and that new advertisers had been drawn to new platforms. Many clients were spending more  with STV and marketing their brands and services across a number of assets in the STV Family. STV Glasgow was launched in June and achieved target revenue of £600,000 during the second half.Read More

More jobs to go in restructuring

RBS boss insists bank ‘making progress’ despite 7th year of loss

Royal Bank of Scotland boss Ross McEwan today insisted it was making progress and needed to continue paying bonuses in spite of another loss and further costs for mis-selling. He admitted there would be further job losses but was unable to provide a number. The bank made a £3.5 billion operating profit that was turned into a £3.5bn bottom line loss mainly after writing down the value of its business in the US. The total bonus pool is down 16% from £576 million to £483m and the number of bankers paidRead More