Today's letter from the Editor
Today's Matrices
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Senior Environmental Adviser - Maternity Cover

£37040 - £43600 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The UK's export credit agency a...

Recruitment Genius: CBM & Lubrication Technician

£25000 - £27500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company provides a compreh...

Recruitment Genius: Care Worker - Residential Emergency Service

£16800 - £19500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Would you like to join an organ...

Recruitment Genius: Senior Landscaper

£25000 - £28000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: In the last five years this com...

The Business Matrix: Tuesday 23 August 2011

HR Owen doubles profits to £1.7m

The luxury car dealer HR Owen more than doubled profits in the six months to 30 June to £1.7m. The company, which sells Bentleys, BMWs, Ferraris and Lamborghinis, said new car volumes increased to 277 over the period, compared with 240 the previous year. The company’s revenues rose by 18 per cent, from £80m to £93m.

Gold ‘heading for $2,000 record’

The price of gold surged to another record as investors worried that the US economy could slide into a recession after a spate of poor data. Analysts predict that bullion could hit $2,000 soon, given its strong momentum. Spot gold hit $1,895.76 an ounce in New York yesterday. The price of gold has risen more than a third this year.

Stagecoach backs its move on tax

Stagecoach described as “absurd” calls by the leading advisory group Pirc for investors in the transport company to reject its pay policies at this week’s annual meeting. Stagecoach incurred Pirc’s censure after it moved bonus payments forward so its CEO, Sir Brian Souter, and FD Martin Griffiths avoided paying the new 50p tax rate on them.

Micro Focus ends takeover talks

Shares in Micro Focus sank 3 per cent after the software firm confirmed that talks with two finance groups had come to an end. Advent International, one of the potential buyers, said the current market turmoil was partly behind the decision to end the discussions. The business has offices in 20 countries and employs 1,200 people.

Cupid acquires Brazil dating sites

The online dating company Cupid has acquired several Brazilian online dating websites for £500,000. The sites include AondeNamoro.com, a traditional online dating site, and SolteirosComFilhos.com, an online dating site for single parents. These dating sites have a total of 1.4 million members.

New look for Smith & Jones

Barracuda Pub Group, the owner of Varsity student bars, is relaunching its Smith & Jones brand. The company, which owns and operates 205 managed pubs throughout the UK, has redesigned the Smith & Jones logo to broaden its appeal and increase the customer base of the brand.

Lehman sues RBS over ABN swap

The trustee of Lehman Brothers is suing Royal Bank of Scotland over a 1998 swap deal. ABN Amro, now owned by RBS, ended the swap early, one week after Lehman filed for bankruptcy, the the complaint says. But RBS is looking to offset the outstanding $346m (£210m) against amounts owed to it by Lehman.

HSBC mulls sale of Canadian unit

HSBC is believed to be in talks over the possible sale of its Canadian wealth management unit as part of the banking giant’s worldwide restructuring. HSBC declined to comment last night on reports from Canada that it had given potential bidders access to the books on its retail brokerage there.

Red tape delays Essar projects

Shares in Essar Energy sank by 4 per cent after the India-focused refiner and power generator said three projects would be delayed as it continues to battle hold-ups from regulators. The FTSE 100 company posted a 49 per cent rise in half-yearly underlying profits of $478m (£291m).

Malaysia earnings boost Petrofac

Petrofac posted a forecast beating 7 per cent rise in first half earnings to $246m (£150m), boosted by its business in Malaysia. It said it was confident demand from national oil firms would fuel future growth. The company designs and builds oil and gas infrastructure and also invests in oilfields.

Latest stories from i100
SPONSORED FEATURES
Career Services

Day In a Page

The long walk west: they fled war in Syria, only to get held up in Hungary – now hundreds of refugees have set off on foot for Austria

They fled war in Syria...

...only to get stuck and sidetracked in Hungary
From The Prisoner to Mad Men, elaborate title sequences are one of the keys to a great TV series

Title sequences: From The Prisoner to Mad Men

Elaborate title sequences are one of the keys to a great TV series. But why does the art form have such a chequered history?
Giorgio Armani Beauty's fabric-inspired foundations: Get back to basics this autumn

Giorgio Armani Beauty's foundations

Sumptuous fabrics meet luscious cosmetics for this elegant look
From stowaways to Operation Stack: Life in a transcontinental lorry cab

Life from the inside of a trucker's cab

From stowaways to Operation Stack, it's a challenging time to be a trucker heading to and from the Continent
Kelis interview: The songwriter and sauce-maker on cooking for Pharrell and crying over potatoes

Kelis interview

The singer and sauce-maker on cooking for Pharrell
Refugee crisis: David Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia - will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi?

Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia...

But will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi, asks Robert Fisk
Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Humanity must be at the heart of politics, says Jeremy Corbyn
Joe Biden's 'tease tour': Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?

Joe Biden's 'tease tour'

Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?
Britain's 24-hour culture: With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever

Britain's 24-hour culture

With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever
Diplomacy board game: Treachery is the way to win - which makes it just like the real thing

The addictive nature of Diplomacy

Bullying, betrayal, aggression – it may be just a board game, but the family that plays Diplomacy may never look at each other in the same way again
Lady Chatterley's Lover: Racy underwear for fans of DH Lawrence's equally racy tome

Fashion: Ooh, Lady Chatterley!

Take inspiration from DH Lawrence's racy tome with equally racy underwear
8 best children's clocks

Tick-tock: 8 best children's clocks

Whether you’re teaching them to tell the time or putting the finishing touches to a nursery, there’s a ticker for that
Charlie Austin: Queens Park Rangers striker says ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

Charlie Austin: ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

After hitting 18 goals in the Premier League last season, the QPR striker was the great non-deal of transfer deadline day. But he says he'd preferred another shot at promotion
Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea