The Business Matrix: Friday 27 March 2015


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The Independent Online

Adidas customers to get more choice

Adidas plans to speed up production and allow shoppers to customise more shoes and clothes, aiming to accelerate sales and profit growth over the next five years. The German sportswear giant said it was testing automated production units that would allow it to shift manufacturing from Asia closer to consumers.

RBS to sell Coutts’ global arm

Royal Bank of Scotland is set to announce the sale of the international arm of its private  banking unit Coutts today to Switzerland’s Union Bancaire Privée for up to $800m (£540m). RBS is expected to indemnify the buyer from any potential action by regulators against Coutts’ Swiss business over tax issues.

EasyJet on course for winter warmth

EasyJet is en route to land its first profit for the tough winter half of the year, as it cashes in on cheaper fuel and more fliers. The carrier upgraded its forecasts for the six months to April yesterday; after saying in January it would be up to £30m into the red, it now expects results somewhere between a £5m loss and £10m profit.

Shell cuts 250 North Sea jobs

Shell is planning further job cuts in its North Sea business, the oil and gas group said yesterday, despite the tax cuts announced in last week’s Budget to help the industry. The oil major cut 250 jobs last August and said it would lose “at least” 250 more this year. Rival Taqa also said it would cut 100 North Sea jobs this year.

M&C Saatchi’s 17% rise to celebrate

The ad agency M&C Saatchi celebrated the 10th anniversary of its stock market flotation by revealing a 17 per cent jump in pre-tax profits last year to £17.2m. It began with just four offices. It now has 23 around the world and profits are growing as each one moves from start-up into the black.

DFS refinancing tips firm into loss

DFS has revealed its  float and debt refinancing earlier this month cost it £20m. The sum sent the sofa retailer into a £14.4m pre-tax loss for the six months to the end of January. Excluding the  one-off costs, profits rose 16.5 per cent to £27.6m,  on sales up 10.5 per cent  to £431.5m.