Business week in review

In profit...

Diageo shareholders treated themselves to a stiff one on Wednesday after the drinks giant launched the Chinese white spirit brand, Shui Jing Fang, in the UK. Diageo's chief executive Paul Walsh said Britain is the first European market to stock the 52 per cent-proof drink, which will retail for £99 a bottle.

Meanwhile, Nick Wharton boss of Dunelm, the homewares retailer, toasted the recent wet weather, which has boosted its fourth quarter revenues by £8m, as shoppers flocked to its out-of-town stores instead of the park or beach. The retailer posted underlying sales up by 10.4 per cent over the period to 30 June.

Wet roads are also no problem for Volvo, the Swedish truck maker, which has agreed to sell its aero engine arm to the engineering group GKN for £633m. Nigel Stein, GKN's chief executive, said it was a "highly attractive acquisition", which was also a nod to a lower price tag than the City had expected.

...at a loss

Sir Andrew Witty, the chief executive of GlaxoSmithKline, may have been feeling a bit depressed on Monday after the UK's largest drugs maker paid a $3bn (£1.9bn) fine to settle a multi-year lawsuit.

It was revealed that GSK had bribed doctors into prescribing children with the dangerous antidepressant Paxil, which is branded Seroxat in the UK.

Drinks firm Britvic lost its fizz as chief executive Paul Moody was forced to withdraw its Robinson's Fruit Shoot and Fruit Shoot Hydro children's drink. A move that will hit this year's profit by up to £5m. Britain's biggest soft drinks maker is to recall the brands in the UK and France after it admitted a new "magic cap" designed to prevent spills was faulty.

Cash-strapped consumers, ignoring a different sort of spill, were partly blamed by Johnson Service Group's boss John Talbot for the closure 100 dry cleaning stores. He said people were saving cash by delaying taking their suits to be freshened up.

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