Business Diary: Paying the price for Cadbury's defeat

Cadbury has announced 150 job losses, mostly at its head office in west London, following the Kraft takeover. A number must come from the communications team, several of whom have already quit. They didn't have much choice but to stand down after bad-mouthing Kraft for months as they tried to fight off the unwanted bid.

The never-ending discounted sofa

"Some day this war will end," Robert Duvall said to Martin Sheen in Apocalypse Now. The assistants running the sale at DFS know how he felt. The in-play furniture retailer has been promising since at least the second half of January that its post-Christmas sale is coming to an end. In March, its website still says: "DFS sale is ending. Final days to save".

The prize ticket that caused indigestion

Pity the poor man who, in a fit of rage at the bureaucracy involved in claiming his prize, ate a €10,000 prize-winning scratchcard on a Ryanair flight before getting off the plane. Some 40 people have now come forward claiming to be the gentleman in question, but Ryanair and its scratchcard partner are refusing to pay up to anyone as it is impossible to verify the claim.

Parker knows where to send his CV

Alan Parker, the Whitbread chief executive due to retire in November, says he intends to spend his time "watching Arsenal and building a non-executive career". Not that he's backing the Gunners to land the Premier League this season. "I am not sure we are going to win it," he says. "But we can't keep coming in third." Perhaps the first directorship Parker should seek is a seat on the board at Arsenal.

ITV bosses are in exalted company

Archie Norman and Adam Crozier, the new brooms at ITV, have impressed at least one analyst. Claudio Aspesi of Bernstein Research says their arrival marks "the era of the Galacticos" a reference to the Real Madrid team that included Zinedine Zidane, Luis Figo and David Beckham. Still, as Aspesi points out, the Madrid experience shows that "star-studded teams do not necessarily win".

Number of the day: 12

Months for which the Bank of England base rate has now remained at a record low of 0.5 per cent.

businessdiary@independent.co.uk

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