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The Business Matrix: Tuesday 29 January 2013

Batman puts R4E back in the black

Work on glitzy premieres for Batman and Spider-Man films, and an end to the uncertainty caused by the Olympics, wer good news for Reach4Entertainment. The specialist marketing group, which promotes West End shows and creates signage on the outside of theatres and cinemas, expects to swing back into profit for 2012.

EasyJet deputy in line for promotion

Charles Gurassa, the deputy chairman of easyJet, is in pole position to replace Sir Mike Rake as chairman after the budget carrier said the job would be vacant by the summer. The airline's founder Sir Stelios Haji-Ioannou, who with his siblings owns a 37 per cent stake, has had a tempestuous three-year relationship with Sir Mike.

New loco may get cargoes on track

British exporters could soon be sending rail freight to Europe more easily after Eurotunnel tested a new train through the Channel Tunnel. At present, only Class 92 locomotives are allowed in the tunnel and rail freight must change trains. But the new Siemens Vectron locomotive could haul traffic directly from the Continent to the UK.

Lavazza enters UK coffee shop market

The Italian coffee giant Lavazza plans to open nearly 400 shops across Britain within 10 years, in the latest sign of the public's seemingly insatiable demand for caffeine. The capital will be a key target for Lavazza Expression, the coffee-maker's new store format, with 50 shops planned for the Greater London are over the next three years.

Toyota overtakes GM as king of cars

Toyota has recaptured its No 1 spot as the world's biggest car-maker, overtaking America's General Motors again. Toyota lost pole position in 2011 after the tsunami in Japan and floods in Thailand. But in 2012 it produced 9.75 million vehicles, a rise of 22 per cent, compared with GM's 9.29 million.

Lauvergeon tipped for key EADS job

France has stepped up support for Anne Lauvergeon as the potential new chairwoman of the Airbus owner EADS. Its backing has injected fresh uncertainty into efforts to free the European aerospace group from the state interference that scuppered its planned merger with BAE last year.

Augean 'at lower end' of forecasts

Augean, which specialises in the management of hazardous waste, warned yesterday that its 2012 results would be at the lower end of forecasts. It said the build-up of volumes of low-level waste from decommissioned nuclear power stations was slower than it expected.

Goldman's Rizzo to leave his job

Luigi Rizzo is leaving his job as Goldman Sachs's managing director of European financial mergers and acquisitions after 20 years at the US bank. He worked on Barclays' deal with South Africa's ABSA and a three-way merger of Spain's Liberbank, Ibercaja and Cajatres.

Barnes & Noble to shut third of shops

Barnes & Noble, the US book chain which markets the Nook electronic reader, expects to shut down up to a third of its 689 retail stores over the next decade as it seeks to cut costs in an increasingly competitive market for book-selling.

Laxfield unearths £1bn pot of gold

Laxfield Capital, a fund manager backed by the Singaporean sovereign wealth fund GIC, has announced a £1bn boost for the UK's stuttering commercial property sector. It will make loans of up to 75 per cent for office, retail and industrial space.

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