The City Diary: Silence on Allam's past

Egyptian-born Assem Allam is often dubbed "one of East Yorkshire's most successful businessmen" and it might be true as he's said to be worth £185m. He's been in the news lately after announcing his takeover of Hull City FC, so cue lots of publicity along the lines of: "his track record in business suggests he is a man who knows what he wants and just how to get it".

Well, not always. A 1992 edition of Lloyd's List reports: "Efforts to sell Hull-based Ruscador Shipyard as a going concern have failed.... Ruscador was a wholly owned subsidiary of Tempest Diesels, a Lincolnshire firm headed by Assem Allam.... Financial difficulties besetting Tempest Diesels led to Ernst and Young being called in to administer both companies.... The cessation of operations [resulted in] the redundancy of the company's entire workforce of more than 50."

Why has this detail been forgotten? We may never know. Allam's spokesman does not return my calls.

Dublin eulogy

Michael O'Leary, as you've never seen him before. The vermin under his nose is actually a moustache, apparently grown as part of a charity appeal which astonishingly has nothing to do with Ireland. Michael is pictured at the timely opening of Dublin airport's terminal two on Friday, carrying a coffin as "the airport's €1.2bn T2 white elephant officially marks the death of Irish tourism," as he puts it. "It is fitting that this unnecessary Taj Mahal will now become the welcome lounge for IMF officials at Dublin airport," he adds. "The country is bankrupt. The only way out of this is an IMF solution and, frankly, the sooner the better". Ryanair, of course, is quite partial to a state subsidy itself.

A new colour for Bono

Saint Paul Hewson – aka rocker Bono – now devotes much of his time to making poverty his story, and has launched a number of world-saving initiatives including Data (Debt, Aids, Trade, Africa) and Product Red. But, I wonder, might now be the time to consider another push to eliminate Third World debt, with a Product Green?

Solidarity of shame

Steven Rattner, President Obama's former car czar, has paid $6m to settle pension charges and will be barred from the securities industry. His last public appearance seems to have been an interview given to Henry Blodget, the former analyst turned commentator, who side-stepped any awkward questions. Such solidarity! In 2003 Blodget was also banned from Wall Street, in his case for life.

Young leads by example

It is clearly unsustainable to lose a Government adviser every time they say something stupid, but credit to Lord Young for providing business with a lead. When he took the job as enterprise adviser, the peer remarked: "Firms are inhibited from taking people on if it's too difficult to let them go". Quite.

Teeth should be brushed twice a day to prevent tooth decay
Bryan Cranston as Walter White, in the acclaimed series 'Breaking Bad'
footballChelsea 6 Maribor 0: Blues warm up for Premier League showdown with stroll in Champions League - but Mourinho is short of strikers
Those who were encouraged to walk in a happy manner remembered less negative words
Arts and Entertainment
Princess Olga in 'You Can't Get the Staff'
tvReview: The anachronistic aristocrats, it seemed, were just happy to have some attention
Renee Zellweger as Bridget Jones
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Life and Style

Board creates magnetic field to achieve lift

There have been various incidents of social media users inadvertently flouting the law

Life and Style
Stack ‘em high?: quantity doesn’t always trump quality, as Friends of the Earth can testify
techThe proliferation of online petitions allows us to register our protests at the touch of a button. But do they change anything?
Bourgogne wine maker Laboure-Roi vice president Thibault Garin (L) offers the company's 2013 Beaujolais Nouveau wine to the guest in the wine spa at the Hakone Yunessun spa resort facilities in Hakone town, Kanagawa prefecture, some 100-kilometre west of Tokyo
CSKA Moscow celebrate after equalising with a late penalty
footballCSKA Moscow 2 Manchester City 2: Premier League champions let two goal lead slip in Russia
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

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

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Helpdesk Analyst

£23000 per annum + pension and 22 days holiday: Ashdown Group: An established ...

Senior Helpdesk Analyst / Service Desk Co-ordinator

£27000 per annum + pension, 22 days holiday: Ashdown Group: An established ind...

Senior Pensions Administrator

£23000 - £26000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client is curr...

Corporate Actions Administrator / Operations Administrator

£25 - 30k: Guru Careers: A Corporate Actions Administrator / Operations Admini...

Day In a Page

Indiana serial killer? Man arrested for murdering teenage prostitute confesses to six other murders - and police fear there could be many more

A new American serial killer?

Police fear man arrested for murder of teen prostitute could be responsible for killing spree dating back 20 years
Sweetie, the fake 10-year-old girl designed to catch online predators, claims her first scalp

Sting to trap paedophiles may not carry weight in UK courts

Computer image of ‘Sweetie’ represented entrapment, experts say
Fukushima nuclear crisis: Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on - and may never return home

Return to Fukushima – a land they will never call home again

Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on from nuclear disaster
Wildlife Photographer of the Year: Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize

Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize
Online petitions: Sign here to change the world

Want to change the world? Just sign here

The proliferation of online petitions allows us to register our protests at the touch of a button. But do they change anything?
Ed Sheeran hits back after being labelled too boring to headline festivals

'You need me, I don’t need you'

Ed Sheeran hits back after being labelled too boring to headline festivals
How to Get Away with Murder: Shonda Rhimes reinvents the legal drama

How to Get Away with Murder

Shonda Rhimes reinvents the legal drama
A cup of tea is every worker's right

Hard to swallow

Three hospitals in Leicester have banned their staff from drinking tea and coffee in public areas. Christopher Hirst explains why he thinks that a cuppa is every worker's right
Which animals are nearly extinct?

Which animals are nearly extinct?

Conservationists in Kenya are in mourning after the death of a white northern rhino, which has left the species with a single male. These are the other species on the brink
12 best children's shoes

Perfect for leaf-kicking: 12 best children's shoes

Find footwear perfect to keep kids' feet protected this autumn
Anderlecht vs Arsenal: Gunners' ray of light Aaron Ramsey shines again

Arsenal’s ray of light ready to shine again

Aaron Ramsey’s injury record has prompted a club investigation. For now, the midfielder is just happy to be fit to face Anderlecht in the Champions League
Comment: David Moyes' show of sensitivity thrown back in his face by former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson

Moyes’ show of sensitivity thrown back in his face... by Ferguson

Manchester United legend tramples on successor who resisted criticising his inheritance
Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells
Ranked seventh in world’s best tourist cities - not London, or Edinburgh, but Salisbury

Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2015

UK city beats Vienna, Paris and New York to be ranked seventh in world’s best tourist destinations - but it's not London