Business and City in Brief

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The Independent Online

Bernard Tapie, who described his purchase of Adidas three years ago as 'the deal of my life,' has sold his controlling share of the sporting goods giant for DM615m ( pounds 262m) following the abandoned disposal to Pentland last summer.

The buyers include three state-run French financial firms, two British investment groups and Robert Louis-Dreyfus, the outgoing chief executive of Saatchi & Saatchi, the UK advertising group. Mr Louis-Dreyfus will control a 15 per cent stake in Adidas through his Ricesa corporation.


MFI Furniture is closing its home delivery service based at Runcorn, Cheshire, with the loss of 259 jobs. Runcorn handles the direct delivery of Schreiber rigid kitchens, which will now be despatched to local MFI stores for onward delivery to customers.

Spain's lost jobs Unemployment in Spain rose by 8.47 per cent in the final quarter of 1992 to 3.05 million equal to 20.08 per cent of the workforce.


The German government dismissed calls by the opposition Social Democrats for the introduction of a 10 per cent 'solidarity surcharge' on income tax and an unemployment levy for civil servants and the self- employed from 1 July.


Japan's wholesale prices in January edged down by 0.1 per cent from December and by 1 per cent from a year earlier. Prices of steel, electrical equipment and oil were weaker, while timber and scrap metal prices rose. Corporate bankruptcies edged up 1.2 per cent from a year earlier to 960, marking the 28th successive monthly rise. A record 43,144 people filed for personal bankruptcy in Japan last year, up 85 per cent from 1991.


The French government is set to announce a Fr2bn ( pounds 260m) capital increase for Bull, the state-owned computer firm, at the end of the month. Sales fell 9.7 per cent to Fr30.18bn in 1992. Full results, which are expected to show an operating loss of more than Fr500m, will be released next month.


The Dutch government has approved the takeover of NV Fokker, the aircraft manufacturer, by Deutsche Aerospace, owned by Daimler-Benz.


British Petroleum has sold a one-third stake in a Spanish petrochemicals plant for an undisclosed sum to Ube Industries of Tokyo. The plant's annual turnover is about dollars 80m ( pounds 56m).


NEW YORK: Markets closed for national holiday.

HONG KONG: Active trading on renewed hope of talks between the UK and China on Hong Kong's political future saw the Hang Seng index close 191.29 points higher at 6,049.44.

TOKYO: Index-linked buying in the closing minutes pushed the Nikkei 225 index back above the 17,000-point level to close up 266.48 points at 17,117.99.

SYDNEY: The All-Ordinaries index fell 7.00 points to 1,596.5.

FRANKFURT: In lacklustre trading, the DAX index closed 3.28 points higher at 1,664.71.

MILAN: Profit-taking took blue chips off their highs. The MIB all-share index closed 1.66 per cent higher at 1,105.

AMSTERDAM: Share prices closed slightly higher after a breakdown in the trading system. The CBS Tendency index was up 0.2 points at 99.1.

PARIS: French shares ended lower in subdued trading. The CAC-40 index fell 11.68 points to 1,899.49.

LONDON: Report, page 21.