Business week in review
Sunday 31 March 2013
So, axe 5,000 jobs and pocket £3.7m. Nice work if you can get it. Pascal Soirot plays the role of the rich axe-man at drugmaker AstraZeneca, where he is chief executive. It emerged on Monday that he got those millions for just three months' work, which is about £40,000 a day at a time when the pharmaceuticals giant is trying to save money.
Soirot has announced closures at a string of Astra sites, including a major R&D facility in Alderley Park, Cheshire. On top of his base salary of 1.1m, he received compensation for bonuses lost when he left rival Roche for Astra.
Dame Clara Furse was unveiled as a member of the Bank of England's Financial Policy Committee last Tuesday. The former head of the London Stock Exchange will be joining a committee that will oversee the UK's financial system from next week.
The FPC was set up as part of sweeping regulatory reforms in the wake of the financial crisis.
Lloyd's of London, the world's biggest insurance market that was founded in 1678, announced it was back in the black on Wednesday after a lossmaking 2011. Boss Richard Ward acclaimed the "strong results".
...at a loss
Monday was tough for men looking for love, as Cupid chief executive Bill Dobbie was forced to defend the dating website against allegations that not all of its users may be genuine.
The BBC claimed that men were encouraged to sign up to the site after receiving fake responses from women agreeing to a drink or dinner. The report also alleged that the fake profiles were created by Cupid staff.
Dobbie said he was taking legal advice over a "great deal of misrepresentation and ill-informed speculation". Directors said their investigations found no evidence to support the claims.
A retailer blaming the weather for poor results? Yes, it's true: high street chains continue to roll-out this excuse for falling profit. Ian Cheshire, the boss at B&Q-owner Kingfisher, said on Tuesday that "depressing wintry weather" had hurt the DIY chain, as sales of barbeques and garden furniture plummeted.
Tidjane Thiam may be considered one of the UK's top bosses, but the Prudential chief executive was licking his wounds on Wednesday after being censured by the Financial Services Authority for misconduct over the failed takeover of AIA in 2010.
- 1 Nathan Collier: Montana man inspired by same-sex marriage ruling requests right to wed two wives
- 2 'Help me I'm trapped in a factory' messages keep being found on bottles of vitamin water
- 3 Right to die: Belgian doctors rule depressed 24-year-old woman has right to end her life
- 4 Wimbledon 2015: Dustin Brown knocks Rafael Nadal out of the championship
- 5 Primark and Penny's heir Barry Ryan drowns trying to save his 21-year-old son
Nathan Collier: Montana man inspired by same-sex marriage ruling requests right to wed two wives
Russell Brand condemns moment of silence for Tunisia attack victims as a 'minute of bulls**t'
Right to die: Belgian doctors rule depressed 24-year-old woman has right to end her life
Worker killed by robot at Volkswagen car factory
BP hit with record $18.7 billion fine over Deepwater Horizon Gulf oil spill
Greece crisis: IMF was pushed around by Angela Merkel and Nicholas Sarkozy – and now it is being humiliated
'I wish the BBC would stop calling it Islamic State' – David Cameron unleashes frustration at broadcaster
Greece crisis: The wider lesson is that it’s time to abandon this failed experiment in currencies
Forget little green men – aliens will look like humans, says Cambridge University evolution expert
Girl, 7, stares down hate preacher at Ohio festival with pro-LGBT rainbow flag gesture
They are neither a 'state' nor 'Islamic': Why we shouldn't call them Isis, Isil or IS
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