Business Diary: 16/01/2010

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The Independent Online

Paddy Power piles on the misery at BA

What has Paddy Power got against Willie Walsh? First the bookmaker enraged the British Airways boss by quoting odds to punters wanting to bet on his airline going bust. And now it has Walsh down as favourite in its "2010 Sack Race" for CEOs. Just 5/2 is all you get betting on Walsh to be fired this year.

The grocers won't be ousted at any price

Not that Paddy Power will worry too many chief executives – its odds look a little peculiar. How can, say, Sir Terry Leahy, boss of the giant Tesco, be more likely to go than Justin King at Sainsbury's? And as for 8/1 on Stephen Hester getting sacked by Royal Bank of Scotland, you're wasting your money.

Will RBS still win all those awards?

There's no room for sentiment in business. Royal Bank of Scotland picked up a string of gongs at the Banking Technology Awards in November. The ceremony was held at the super-posh Grosvenor House Hotel, which RBS, its owner, has now put up for sale.

Ski resort caught out by too much snow

One would have thought Britain's wintry weather would be good for business at Scotland's ski resorts. Not so at the CairnGorm Mountain ski centre, which was closed yesterday after two days of blizzards left it unable to cope with the snowdrifts that had built up on its approach road and slopes.

As long as our furry friends stay warm

Another unlikely winner from the big freeze: step forward the retail chain Pets at Home. Other shops have complained that the bad weather has put customers off coming out and spending, but Pets at Home's sales are soaring, thanks to a rush on dog coats and rabbit hutch covers.

Number of the day: 58%

The increase in sales of Land Rovers during December, with worldwide sales rising to 16,340.

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