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The Business Matrix: Tuesday 27 November 2012

Betfair pulls plans for Greek venture

Setting up a betting business in Greece won't make much money, Betfair said yesterday as it withdrew plans to enter the country. The gambling group said "we consider the gambling legislation in the country to be inconsistent with European law". It also said that Greece's gambling market was "economically unattractive".

SEC chief Schapiro to step down

Mary Schapiro will step down as head of the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) next month in the first major change in Barack Obama's financial team since he won a second term in office. SEC Commissioner Elisse Walter will succeed Ms Schapiro, who presided over the regulator as it attempted to rebuild its credibility.

Quintain targets £150m in sell-offs

Quintain is aiming for £150m in property sell-offs as it funnels resources into its vast Greenwich and Wembley developments in London and cuts debt. Weak property markets outside the capital dragged on the firm in the six months to September as the value of its overall portfolio slipped £19.1m, or 1.7 per cent, to £1.11bn.

UBM ready for return to Britain

Media and marketing services company UBM yesterday said its shareholders had approved a proposal to return the firm's tax base to the UK after four years in Ireland. The company, which organises exhibitions and conferences, said it believed the current legislative framework in Britain represents a significant improvement for multinationals.

Forecasts spark SDL warning

Translation software firm SDL was forced to issue a profits warning yesterday after downgrading forecasts for the year.

The company – which parted company with chief executive John Hunter earlier this month – warned full-year figures could be £4m short of expectations, at around £36m.

Fall in public expectations

Public inflation expectations in Britain for the next 12 months fell to 2.8 per cent in November from 3.0 per cent in October, a survey by polling company YouGov showed. Inflation expectations for the next 5-10 years also fell, dropping to 3.4 per cent - the lowest since July - from 3.7 per cent in October.

Wrapping paper maker boost

International Greetings, the wrapping paper and gift-making business, which makes Peppa Pig and Disney Princess products, said it will hit City expectations for the six months to October. The firm said its performance in the US had been "particularly strong".

Review may see builder flotation

Home builder McCarthy & Stone is set for a sale, an initial public offering or a £500m loan refinancing three years after it was taken over by lenders in a debt-for-equity swap. It has appointed financial advisor Moelis & Company to conduct a strategic review of the business.

Amazon to sell US-dollar bonds

Amazon is to start selling its first US-dollar bonds since 1999, as it seeks to raise funds of at least $500m. The Seattle-based internet specialist is to issue the debt with a maturity of between three and 10 years, according to a filing with US regulators.

Beckers to quit as RWE npower chief

Volker Beckers is to step down from group chief executive officer at RWE npower at the end of the year. He will be replaced by chief commercial officer Paul Massara. The company said the change was as a result of "group reorganisation".

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