Business Diary: Consolation prizes for Forgemasters

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The Independent Online

Congratulations to Graham Honeyman, the chief executive of Sheffield Forgemasters, who has just won the Institute of Directors' prestigious director of the year award, as well as two other gongs at the same shindig.

Strangely, while handing out the doubtlessly well-deserved trophies, the IoD made no mention of the row over the Government's decision to cancel a loan for expansion that Labour ministers had offered to Mr Honeyman's company. Could that be because the IoD, while lauding Forgemasters, is about as laissez-faire on business policy as it is possible to imagine?

Lord Sugar's worst job?

The guest of honour at the IoD awards dinner was none other than Lord Sugar, the Labour-supporting peer who served as Gordon Brown's enterprise champion until the electorate gave the prime minister the "you're fired" treatment. It sounds as if Lord Sugar does not look back fondly on his term of office – apparently it gave him depression – and now says his first reaction on being offered the post was to ask: "Why is someone in the government telling a business what to do?"

Peston breaks the strike

Anti-union business titans can rest easy in the knowledge that they need not harbour any suspicions about the liberal tendencies of Robert Peston, the BBC's Business Editor, who was one of Auntie's strike-breakers yesterday. Not that Peston crossed the picket lines in White City (pity, the confrontation there with Newsnight's economics editor, Paul Mason, might have been fun to watch). No, having been dispatched to China at licence-payers' expense, Peston felt obliged to blog from Inner Mongolia on the BBC News website.

Bed bugs send Rentokil delirious

After all those profits warnings issued by the company a couple of years ago, the recovery at Rentokil continues apace. But the latest rise in earnings is due to an unlikely source. You may have read about the infestation of New York apartment blocks by bed bugs. Well guess who New Yorkers called in to get rid of the horrible critters? Rentokil of course, whose sales in the Big Apple have soared over the past six months. Keep the bed bugs coming.