Laura Chesters

Laura Chesters is a business reporter and covers the consumer, food, drink and luxury goods sectors on the business desk at The London Evening Standard, i, The Independent and The Independent on Sunday

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Premier Foods cooks up cost-cutting deal for Bird’s Custard, Angel Delight and Marvel

Premier Foods’ so-called power brands failed to grow as hoped, as the food group today spun off the making of its Bird’s Custard, Angel Delight and Marvel brands to help ease costs.

Market Report: Investors back Shire deal

Punters in the City were hoping the drugs do work as they piled into pharmaceutical giant Shire on rumours it was a takeover target.

Whitbread shares edge higher on strong first half results

Shares in Whitbread, the owner of Costa Coffe and Premier Inn, topped the FTSE 100 as the company reported strong sales in the first half.

Market Report: Reckitt Benckiser is expected to exercise its great acquisition skills

Chatter about new deals for Reckitt Benckiser appealed to the City just as bid hopes were dashed for the medical equipment maker Smith & Nephew.

Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall and Prince Charles, Prince of Wales as they are seen viewing horses in the parade ring from the Royal Box on the second day of Royal Ascot in London, 2013

Oliver Brown odds-on to win at Royal Ascot

The retailer has enjoyed a 50% jump in revenues across its range

Bonmarché sees 66% increase in profits in maiden results

Bonmarché has reported a 66 per cent jump in annual profit in its first set of full-year results as a public company.

Mulberry pins hopes on cheaper handbags after profits plunge 46 per cent

Sales are continuing to slide at Mulberry as the handbag designer battles to win back its core British customers.

Mulberry sees profits dive after disastrous year

Mulberry’s profits almost halved last year after failed upmarket move

Government to crack down on counterfeit goods

The government is to step up its crackdown on fake goods in the UK as a new report revealed clothing, tobacco and alcohol are the top products targeted by counterfeiters.

Coca Cola Life: 'Fewer calories' soft drink to launch in Britain

Coca Cola Life has a third less sugar and fewer calories than normal Coke

Day In a Page

Iraq crisis: How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over the north of the country

How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over northern Iraq

A speech by an ex-MI6 boss hints at a plan going back over a decade. In some areas, being Shia is akin to being a Jew in Nazi Germany, says Patrick Cockburn
The evolution of Andy Serkis: First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

The evolution of Andy Serkis

First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial: Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried

You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial...

Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried
Refugee children from Central America let down by Washington's high ideals

Refugee children let down by Washington's high ideals

Democrats and Republicans refuse to set aside their differences to cope with the influx of desperate Central Americas, says Rupert Cornwell
Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Malorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
Blackest is the new black: Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...

Blackest is the new black

Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...
Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

The US Ambassador to London holds 'jeans and beer' gigs at his official residence – it's all part of the job, he tells Chris Green
Meet the Quantified Selfers: From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor

Meet the 'Quantified Selfers'

From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
Madani Younis: Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Madani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

When it comes to national stereotyping, the Irish – among others – know it can pay to play up to outsiders' expectations, says DJ Taylor
Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy: Was the otter man the wildlife champion he appeared to be?

Otter man Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy

The aristocrat's eccentric devotion to his pets inspired a generation. But our greatest living nature writer believes his legacy has been quite toxic
Joanna Rowsell: The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia

Joanna Rowsell: 'I wear my wig to look normal'

The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef gives raw ingredients a lift with his quick marinades

Bill Granger's quick and delicious marinades

Our chef's marinades are great for weekend barbecuing, but are also a delicious way of injecting flavour into, and breaking the monotony of, weekday meals
Germany vs Argentina World Cup 2014 preview: Why Brazilians don't love their neighbours Argentina any more

Anyone but Argentina – why Brazilians don’t love their neighbours any more

The hosts will be supporting Germany in today's World Cup final, reports Alex Bellos
The Open 2014: Time again to ask that major question - can Lee Westwood win at last?

The Open 2014

Time again to ask that major question - can Lee Westwood win at last?