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The Business Matrix: Thursday 12 July 2012

Hudson Jeans may be sold

Hudson Jeans, the denim brand modelled by Mick Jagger's daughter Georgia May, is mulling a sale that could value it at $150m. The firm, based in California despite its Union flag logo, is owned by the private equity firms Webster Capital and Fireman Capital. They are understood to have hired Lazards to help consider the options .

Sainsbury's loses two from board

Anna Ford, the former BBC news presenter, has stepped down from the board of Sainsbury's after five years. Ahead of its annual meeting, Sainsbury's also said that Bob Stack, another non-executive, is leaving. His role as chairman of the remuneration committee will be taken by Mary Harris, who has been on the board since 2007.

Thorntons grow in fourth quarter

Thorntons reassured investors yesterday by growing underlying sales in its fourth quarter. The City forecasts the 101-year old chocolatier will post flat annual profits, although it will fall into the red accounting for impairment and onerous lease charges. Total revenues at Thorntons rose by 8 per cent to £25m.

Xstrata gives date on merger vote

The mining giant Xstrata has named 7 September as the new date for shareholders to vote on its controversial £57bn merger with the Glencore commodities trading group. The vote, which had originally been scheduled for today, has been postponed after widespread investor hostility towards the price and terms of the deal.

Hays reports drop in fee income

Hays reported a 9 per cent drop in UK and Ireland like-for-like net fee income for its final quarter to 30 June as conditions became "increasingly challenging". A better performance in international markets helped worldwide net fee income rise 2 per cent, but it said conditions would remain tough.

Insurer says business is brisk

The price comparison website Moneysupermarket.com said half-year revenues were expected to rise by around 15 per cent to £102m. The group said trading in the second quarter remained good against a strong comparative period a year earlier, which included sponsorship of Britain's Got Talent.

UK Mail parcels service lift profits

UK Mail said it made a "satisfactory" start to the new financial year as underlying revenues rose by around 10 per cent. A decline in courier revenues was offset by growth in the firm's parcels, mail and pallets divisions during the three months to 30 June.

Xerox to buy Poole-based WDS

American technology group Xerox has agreed to buy Poole-based wireless telecommunications support firm WDS. Founded in 1995, WDS has over 2,000 employees in the United States, United Kingdom, South Africa, Singapore, Australia and New Zealand.

Jubilee boost for JD Wetherspoon

JD Wetherspoon said cost pressures from government legislation would weigh this year on what has so far been a solid performance. The group said recent sales were up 6 per cent, driven by strong trading around the Jubilee and Euro 2012.

Jobless set to soar in the eurozone

The eurozone risks losing another 4.5 million jobs over the next four years unless it changes its austerity plans. The International Labour Organisation warned the jobless total could hit 22 million, and the effect could impact on the global economy.

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