Business Diary: The crown no one wants to win

Click to follow
The Independent Online

Stephen Hester versus Sam Laidlaw: set your alarm clocks now for the battle of Britain's most unpopular chief executives. With both Royal Bank of Scotland and Centrica due to release annual results tomorrow, who will garner the worst headlines? Will Hester claim the crown, for paying out bonuses to RBS bankers while the rest of us suffer from the austerity they played such a big part in causing or will Laidlaw win the day for unveiling record profits as cash-strapped households see their energy bills soar. It's too close to call.



Stannah factory gets a royal lift

It's fashionable to assume we no longer make anything in this country. Well one company begs to differ: step forward (or upwards) Stannah group, founded in 1867 and these days purveyors of the finest stairlifts in the land. The company has just been honoured with a visit to its Andover factory by Prince Charles. Rest assured that our next monarch wasn't looking for something for the Palace – he simply wanted to congratulate Stannah on its 500,000th stairlift which has just rolled off the production line.



Pink un's backer is front page news

The Financial Times's coverage of the Libya crisis has had no hint of bias. No doubt shareholders in its parent company Pearson are proud. But will one investor be just a tad disappointed its own interests have not been considered more important than journalistic integrity by the FT's reporters? With 3 per cent of Pearson shares to its name, maybe the Libyan Investment Authority was expecting a little more support for its regime?



A few crisp words for TV Dragons

Back by popular demand: Dragons' Den bashing. Real-life entrepreneurs continue to be royally wound up by the picture it paints of what it's like to start a business. William Chase, the man behind Tyrrells Crisps, who now runs his own distillery, is the latest to get upset. "It's very much car crash TV," he complains. "The Dragons have the power over these people. I'd want to do something to genuinely help people, not raise my own profile." Still, as Chase no doubt reflects, a bit of sniping isn't bad for the old profile in any case.

businessdiary@independent.co.uk

Comments