James Ashton: Business will be the loser in Olympic gridlock
Drinks at the Arts Club in Mayfair were interspersed with my investment banker friend jumping on the phone to pitch for a sales mandate. Things must be looking up.
When I had his undivided attention, talk turned to this summer. Would we both find it so easy to cross town and meet up when the Olympics are in full swing? My friend doubted it.
There are already signs that large parts of the business world are preparing to shut up shop. At least one bank is advising its staff to work from home. A private equity firm is advising its network that it will closed for summer. They won't be the only ones.
Other than heading into town to watch an event or indulge in some corporate hospitality, the normal comings and goings of industry will be muted.
That's fine for the course of 17 days – and actually plenty of the networking afforded by the Games could lead to good business come autumn. But what will suffer is the flow of complicated transactions that take weeks to consummate, such as mergers and acquisitions. My friend doesn't think the lull will end until well after the Paralympics is over.
So while pubs and hotels may be overflowing in July and August, plenty of day-to-day commerce will simply grind to a halt. Firms would do well to ditch the pretence that it will be business as usual.
- 1 Man on naked bike ride gets ejected after becoming aroused
- 4 Ann Summers survey reveals the UK's favourite sex position
- 5 Ayyan Ali: Pakistan's top model now appears in the courtroom rather than on the catwalk
Man on naked bike ride gets ejected after becoming aroused
Caitlyn Jenner's mother Ester thought her daughter, formerly known as Bruce Jenner, had transitioned for money
Charles Kennedy 1959-2015: A gifted, compassionate politician whose career was cut short by the 'demon drink' - latest news
Charles Kennedy dead: A guy once asked the Lib Dem leader who his favourite Muppet was and his letter response was wonderful
Jaden Smith wears gender fluid dress to high school prom with Hunger Games actress
Thousands of teenage girls enduring debilitating illnesses after routine school cancer vaccination
Migrants in Kos: Photos show real tragedy after Brits abroad complain of 'awkward' holidays
British tourists complain that impoverished boat migrants are making holidays 'awkward' in Kos
Michael Gove determined to scrap the Human Rights Act – even if Scotland retains it
Threat to scrap Human Rights Act could see UK follow Nazi example, warns UN official
Why this year's general election was the most unfair in Britain's history
iJobs Money & Business
£30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The UK's fastest growing, multi...
£70000 - £90000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Financial Reporting Manager i...
£23000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They win lots of awards for the...
£13500 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This nationwide enforcement com...