Pembroke: Danes pull rug from under Saatchi

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The Independent Online
SAATCHI & SAATCHI, the advertising agency that helped steer the Conservative party to four election victories in Britain, has been dumped in Denmark by the Conservative party there. The account had been held by Saatchi's Danish subsidiary since 1987. More wounding for the parent company's chairman, Maurice Saatchi, is that the valuable account has been handed to a fledgling business run by a 28-year-old whipper-snapper, Jens Heimburger.

Mr Heimburger's political connections would have done him no harm in gaining the account. He is a former head of the Danish equivalent of the Young Conservatives.

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DIFFICULT as it may be for estate agents to shift property in the current climate, the sales ploy used by Glentree Estates looks bizarre in the extreme. Offering a detached house in Spaniards Close in Hampstead, north London, the blurb trumpets that pounds 1.35m will buy you a house 'with neighbours like the late Peter Sellers'.

Perhaps the agent thinks the ghost of the former Goon remains a resident.

DON'T TALK to Pam Dobson about ghosts. The landlady of the Brewers Arms in Lewes, East Sussex, has three of them in her 15th-century pub. One sits in the bar with the customers. Another old lady restricts her wanderings to one of the bedrooms and a third keeps to himself at the back of the bar.

The ghosts seem to have made quite an impact. Guests in the spooked bedroom have complained of being 'strangled' at night. And on one occasion an unplugged fruit machine suddenly lit up and churned out its contents.

POOR OLD Spring Ram can't seem to do anything right at the moment. Still reeling from problems under the previous management, the kitchens and bathrooms company is in a mix over its non-executive directors.

Roy Barber and Richard Fortin are being paid pounds 30,000 for their expertise. Unfortunately this is six times what the company's articles of association allow. No doubt the shareholder meeting called to approve the company's pounds 42m rights issue will change the articles and wipe this particular splotch of egg off the company's face.

ANYONE who has trouble getting hold of their financial adviser during mid- February might try ringing a number in Monte Carlo. Well-heeled finance bosses have chosen the palm-fringed jet-setters' paradise as the venue for their first international investment forum.

The beano - aimed at international finance and savings experts and their clients - looks as though it would knock a hole in even the most accommodating expense account. The fee for the two-day conference at the Sporting d'Hiver is Fr2,965 (about pounds 350). And the organisers helpfully enclose a promotional brochure highlighting the sun-kissed beaches and swinging nightlife to encourage potential delegates to sign up.

Given all this extra-curricular entertainment, it is hard to believe anyone will bother attending lectures entitled 'Innovation and performance through value judgement'.

THINGS GET sillier and sillier in American sport. First, top basketball stars such as Shaquille O'Neal and Larry Johnson sign contracts worth anything up to dollars 84m over a 12-year period. Now team managers find top players' salaries are so high that they cannot afford to get them insured as they must pay them even if the player gets injured.

According to the latest issue of Forbes, NBA contracts already forbid motorcycle riding and scuba diving. Now they are looking again at the small print. Perhaps other potentially dangerous activities such as unsupervised jogging and the carrying of heavy shopping might also face the axe.

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