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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Conchita Wurst with French designer Jean Paul Gaultier

Jean-Paul Gaultier exits ready-to-wear to focus on perfume and haute couture

Final ready-to-wear collection from French designer to be launched later this month

Richemont hit by Chinese luxury slowdown

Richemont, the Swiss giant behind Cartier watches, has become latest luxury group to be hit by sales growth slowdown as demand in China wanes.

ASOS shares plunge on third profit warning

Online retailer downgraded its outlook for next year warning profits will remain at "similar level"

Rare blue diamond found in South Africa sold for £17m

Petra Diamonds purchased the 122.52 carat stone in a partnership with an anonymous polishing partner

Market Report: Micro Focus splashes out $1.2bn to buy US-based Attachmate Group

Software and computer consultancies rarely get the City excited, but on Monday a £730m deal by Micro Focus for its American rival helped its shares jump more than 15 per cent.

JD Sports to launch menswear chain as it takes on Topman

Chain in talks to open new outlets in Norwich, Bristol, Gateshead and Merry Hill near Birmingham by the end of the year

Markets Report: Focus switches back to China and Russia

The City switched its focus from Scotland back to China and Russia as the Footsie fell on Thursday.

Véronique Laury

Véronique Laury to become fifth FTSE 100 female boss as head of B&Q owner Kingfisher

She is replacing chief executive of seven years, Sir Ian Cheshire

Market Report: Traders dump shares in companies most at risk from independence Yes vote

As the word “Yes” for an independent Scotland looked more likely after a weekend poll, the word sell echoed around the City yesterday as traders dumped shares in companies most at risk.

Mulberry have launched a range of bags designed by the model Cara Delevingne

Investors give Mulberry bosses a handbagging

Investors have weathered three profit warnings and the departure of chief executive Bruno Guillon in March following its failed move upmarket

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Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas