Business Diary: Michael Gove gets educated on PFI

A wonderfully malicious piece of gossip doing the rounds at Westminster. Word is that Education Secretary Michael Gove's decision to reintroduce the private finance initiative so as to fund £2bn of schools came about because he finally understood how the system worked. Gove had been so anti-PFI because he thought that the private company took ownership of the school after its 25- to 35-year contract had ended. So it's a Diary dunce's hat for the Rick Moranis lookalike.



That sponsorship money's worth it

Still at Westminster, with the Olympics countdown now in full swing, there is disappointment for the US conglomerate General Electric, which is spending millions as an official sponsor of the Games, partly for the access to the rich and powerful that the event provides. The pollster Populus has been studying which brands have been able to associate themselves with the event in the minds of MPs, and it's bad news. Just 6 per cent of our parliamentarians identified GE as a sponsor. On the other hand, almost a third picked Nike as a sponsor, when it is no such thing. Makes you think these MPs are just making stuff up.



New newspaper boss tickled pink

"I am gay to make known Ashley's appointment," Johnston Press chairman Ian Russell apparently says in the newspaper group's press release announcing Ashley Highfield as chief executive. Er, come again? A Dow Jones Newswires story that clearly went through the wringer of Google Translate a couple too many times became a hilarious hit on Twitter last night. The "informal journal publishing house" has made Mr Highfield an "arch executive", we are told. The story so tickled the new boss that he retweeted it.



Road rage breaks out over Virgin

Good to see the behind-the-hands briefing war between the nation's telecoms companies breaking into the open. Spin doctors who gleefully point out the bad numbers in each other's subscriber figures usually stay in the shadows, but The Sun quoted a BT insider, saying "the Ferrari's out of first gear, it's now in reverse", referring to its self-proclaimed Ferrari broadband. Will Virgin respond? Time to check the BT vans for slashed tyres.

businessdiary@independent.co.uk

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Guru Careers: Pricing Analyst

£30 - 35k: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Pricing Analyst to join a leading e-...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £45K YR1: SThree: At SThree, we like to be dif...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£20000 - £25000 per annum + competitive: SThree: Did you know? SThree is a mul...

Guru Careers: C# Project Team Lead

£55 - 65k (DOE): Guru Careers: A unique opportunity for a permanent C# Develop...

Day In a Page

Blundering Tony Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

Blundering Blair quits as Middle East peace envoy – only Israel will miss him

For Arabs – and for Britons who lost their loved ones in his shambolic war in Iraq – his appointment was an insult, says Robert Fisk
Fifa corruption arrests: All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue

Fifa corruption arrests

All hail the Feds for riding to football's rescue, says Ian Herbert
Isis in Syria: The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of President Assad and militant fighters

The Kurdish enclave still resisting the tyranny of Assad and Isis

In Syrian Kurdish cantons along the Turkish border, the progressive aims of the 2011 uprising are being enacted despite the war. Patrick Cockburn returns to Amuda
How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields: Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape the US

How I survived Cambodia's Killing Fields

Acclaimed surgeon SreyRam Kuy celebrates her mother's determination to escape to the US
Stephen Mangan interview: From posh buffoon to pregnant dad, the actor has quite a range

How Stephen Mangan got his range

Posh buffoon, hapless writer, pregnant dad - Mangan is certainly a versatile actor
The ZX Spectrum has been crowd-funded back into play - with some 21st-century tweaks

The ZX Spectrum is back

The ZX Spectrum was the original - and for some players, still the best. David Crookes meets the fans who've kept the games' flames lit
Grace of Monaco film panned: even the screenwriter pours scorn on biopic starring Nicole Kidman

Even the screenwriter pours scorn on Grace of Monaco biopic

The critics had a field day after last year's premiere, but the savaging goes on
Menstrual Hygiene Day: The strange ideas people used to believe about periods

Menstrual Hygiene Day: The strange ideas people once had about periods

If one was missed, vomiting blood was seen as a viable alternative
The best work perks: From free travel cards to making dreams come true (really)

The quirks of work perks

From free travel cards to making dreams come true (really)
Is bridge the latest twee pastime to get hip?

Is bridge becoming hip?

The number of young players has trebled in the past year. Gillian Orr discovers if this old game has new tricks
Long author-lists on research papers are threatening the academic work system

The rise of 'hyperauthorship'

Now that academic papers are written by thousands (yes, thousands) of contributors, it's getting hard to tell workers from shirkers
The rise of Lego Clubs: How toys are helping children struggling with social interaction to build better relationships

The rise of Lego Clubs

How toys are helping children struggling with social interaction to build better relationships
5 best running glasses

On your marks: 5 best running glasses

Whether you’re pounding pavements, parks or hill passes, keep your eyes protected in all weathers
Joe Root: 'Ben Stokes gives everything – he’s rubbing off on us all'

'Ben Stokes gives everything – he’s rubbing off on us all'

Joe Root says the England dressing room is a happy place again – and Stokes is the catalyst
Raif Badawi: Wife pleads for fresh EU help as Saudi blogger's health worsens

Please save my husband

As the health of blogger Raif Badawi worsens in prison, his wife urges EU governments to put pressure on the Saudi Arabian royal family to allow her husband to join his family in Canada