Our Ken turns to Ofex for fun and games

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The Independent Online
Eh'up, chuck, our Ken's launching a company on Ofex. William Roache, the actor who plays Ken Barlow on Coronation Street, is raising pounds 705,000 via an offer for subscription for his company Mambi.

Mr Roache founded Mambi in 1994 to market his own board game "Libel", which he invented while fighting a high-profile legal action against the Sun.

Mr Roache subsequently challenged the Sun's columnist Gary Bushell to a match of "Libel", and then helped Mr Bushell with is TV programme, Bushell on the Box. Mr Roache wants Mambi to develop more celebrity-related games, and is offering 43.5 per cent of the company to raise funds.

The market capital of Mambi will be around pounds 1,620,000. Mr Roache has recruited Brian Hicks, a Hertfordshire-based accountant, as financial director, and both of them will be fleshing out their plans at a press conference this Thursday. Watch this space.

To the Hyde Park Hilton in London for an evening's pugilism courtesy of Goldman Sachs.

My reason for being there is that Richard Sermon, formerly known to me only as a public relations chap with Shandwick and sometime spokesman for Goldman, is also chairman of The London Federation of Clubs for Young People.

The Federation has a distinguished history of holding boxing championships for young lads in the Capital, and last week it was the Senior Boxing Finals.

Seldom can so disparate a collection of people have gathered for a single event. There was Mr Sermon compering the evening, sat next to the Duke of Edinburgh, who was celebrating his 50th year as patron of the association. Mr Sermon is standing for election in January as an Alderman in the City Corporation. With such connections, surely "Sir Richard" cannot be far away.

Among the hundreds of dinner-jacketed junketeers who cheered the 20 or so boxers along, there was the author Martin Amis.

Or as the ring announcer said, "will you welcome please the famous writer Mr Martin Aims".

Boxer Barry McGuigan and Irish footballer Ray Houghton added to the glitter of the occasion.

Fenced off from the diners were the family and friends of the boxers, who frequently interjected with cheerful cries of, "Kill 'im, Kevin."

There was also a large City contingent, including tables from Barings and Guinness Flight, who exchanged insults throughout the evening. Guinness Flight started the fun by sponsoring one bout and getting the compere to announce: "A message to Barings - glad to see you're still here." Needless to say, the boxing, which was closely medically supervised, was more entertaining.

Those Acca people are having a torrid time of late. The Chartered Association of Certified Accountants, fresh from a public bust-up with accountancy Professor Prem Sikka, has taken legal action against an Irish accountancy body for plagiarism.

Anthea Rose, Acca's chief executive, says it has obtained an order restraining the Institute of Incorporated Public Accountants (IIPA) "from plagiarising Acca's syllabus and examination materials".

Ms Rose says: "It is regrettable that an organisation which purports to be a professional body should have plagiarised our material."

Cripes. It obviously doesn't pay to mix it with the toughies of Acca.