James Ashton

Head of Business at London Evening Standard, The Independent, Independent on Sunday, i

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Business View: Osborne wants to coax more from firms, but he offered few giveaways

Ed Miliband’s conference-season assault on the Coalition made backing business a hazardous activity for the Chancellor. Yesterday’s upgraded growth forecasts tell a story of a catch-up recovery, but that in itself will not deliver votes at the ballot box in 2015. George Osborne knows he needs these green shoots to blossom and the many to share the gains of the few.

The 200-year-old company has invested £100m in research over the past three years

Can De La Rue bank on the Old Lady?

As profits jump almost 20% to £28m, and plastic notes take off, the currency printer’s boss is quietly cautious over its prize BoE contract

Babcock International whirls toward helicopter stake

Engineering services firm Babcock International is in exclusive talks to buy into the world’s biggest helicopter operator.

Pearson measures up for a future focused on hi-tech learning

'Financial Times' owner looks to make digital and education 70 per cent of sales by 2015
'Decisions on energy go beyond the life of any Parliament,' says Steve Holliday

Steve Holliday: Playing the power game for Britain

The National Grid's chief executive talks to James Ashton about how to keep the lights on this winter… and plan for the future

Campaign unveiled to inspire young to go into engineering

A report out today calls on parents, teachers, employers and the Government to pull together to inspire the young to become engineers and address the chronic shortage of engineering skills needed to grow the UK economy.

CBI chief warns over 'too hasty' wage rises

John Cridland, the director-general of employers' body the CBI, has warned against hiking wages too soon before Britain's economic recovery has taken strong root. At the same time as intervening in the cost of living debate that will loom large during the 18-month run-in to the next General Election, Mr Cridland cautioned against what he sees as rising political threats to business growth.

Estelle Brachlianoff, Veolia Environnement executive Vice-President

Estelle Brachlianoff: Cleaning up in the world of recycling

The Frenchwoman in charge of Veolia, Britain's biggest waste and water empire, has ambitions to expand further

James Ashton: Energy bosses' failure to show up for parliamentary grilling may haunt them

Outlook It used to be that the main business of politics took place in the chambers and meeting rooms of the Houses of Parliament. Take a look at yesterday's agenda if proof were required that the power wielded by our elected members has crossed the road to Portcullis House. This is where the big issues of the day are being addressed: rising power bills, struggling banks and the ailing high street.

James Ashton: Time to encourge retail investors to turn blue

Outlook There are 3 million retail investors in Lloyds Banking Group who will have heard of chief executive Antonio Horta-Osorio's willingness for more small shareholders to join his register with grim resignation.

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Greggs gives lesson in crisis management

After a mishap with their logo, high street staple Greggs went viral this week. But, as Simon Usborne discovers, their social media response was anything but half baked
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