The Business Week In Review: Bob Dudley, Ian Burke, Carsten Kengeter and Tom Albanese

 

In profit...

It's not quite like the glory, pre-Gulf of Mexico disaster days, but pension funds were cheered when BP raised its dividend 14 per cent to 8 cents on Tuesday.

Until the spill, BP accounted for a quid out of every six paid to UK pension funds, but, even with the increase, it is at barely half that level now. However, boss Bob Dudley could claim that "foundations" had been laid to rebuild the business to its former might.

Another smiling chief is Reckitt Benckiser's Rakesh Kapoor, who took over the Durex-to-Nurofen maker last September. On Wednesday, he announced an expansion into emerging markets and a fourth-quarter profit rise, creating a mini-surge in the share price.

Times are tough, but it seems that doesn't stop us making the odd punt. Rank Group boss Ian Burke revealed a rise in turnover and profit at the bingo and casino operator.

...at a loss

Bankers and chief executives seem to have forgotten their raison d’être: to become extraordinarily rich while the rest of us moan about their good fortune. Yet, so hammered have they been by the media pressure on executive pay that they are now scrabbling to be known as the person who has turned down the mostdough.

Carsten Kengeter, head of investment banking at UBS, was the first in penitent mode, foregoing his bonus in the wake of the alleged fraud by London trader Kweku Adoboli.

Tom Albanese, chief executive of mining titan Rio Tinto, soon followed into the confessional, refusing a bonus after falling aluminium assets badly hit profits. Rio paid $39bn for aluminium group Alcan in 2007 – right at the top of the market. Beyond the bonus brouhaha, SuperGroup chief executive Julian Dunkerton issued a shock profit warning.

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