People & Business

A BRACE of former Tory ministers picked up non-executive directorships yesterday. Angela Knight, former Economic Secretary to the Treasury, has joined SAUR Water Services, the parent of Mid Southern Water and South West Water, while Baroness Chalker of Wallasey, former Minister of Overseas Development, has been appointed an advisory director of Unilever.

SAUR has also given a non-exec job to The Baroness Detta O'Caithan, who made such a performance of heading up the Barbican Centre in London.

Unilever has appointed Hilmar Kopper, former top spokesman for Deutsche Bank, as an advisory director. Baroness Chalker is filling the seat of Karl Otto Pohl, former Bundesbank boss, on the advisory board, and she will become a member of the Anglo-Dutch giant's external affairs and corporate relations committee as well.

ANOTHER former Tory MP to gain preferment this week is Dudley Fishburn, former member for Kensington and an ex-editor of The Economist. Mr Fishburn has been picked to take over from David Keys as chairman of HFC Bank UK, the door-to door credit operation, when Mr Keys retires in September. Mr Fishburn has been a director of HFC, apart from a short break, since 1989.

BUT IT'S not just Tories picking up the prizes. Labour peer Lord Brooke of Alverthorpe, former general secretary of the Inland Revenue Staff Federation (IRSF), has joined accountants Horwath Clark Whitehill.

Before you ask, the ex-Revenue man will not providing clients with inside knowledge of tax avoidance schemes. Clive Brook, ennobled last autumn, will be working with "charities, education and owner-managed businesses, and will also provide Parliamentary advice," says the firm.

Peter Salter, Horwath Clark Whitehill's chief executive, says : "We welcome Lord Brooke's help and advice, which will enable us to develop our services into an increasingly valuable area for clients."

ABN AMRO has snapped up the three-strong building sector research team from the bit of BZW recently gobbled up by CSFB Howard Seymour and Harvey Robinson were in the top four of the Reuters, Extel and Greenwich charts for the last three years, while Scott Fulton is a more recent arrival from Merrill Lynch.

Incidentally that's ABN Amro without the former Hoare Govett on the end. The venerable City name Hoare Govett followed James Capel and Morgan Grenfell into the history books a month ago. Just Hoare Govett Corporate Finance survives in the UK to fly the flag.

Meanwhile Brian Cook has entered the rotating doors of CSFB's offices in Canary Wharf in the opposite direction, joining the investment bank as head of European corporate banking. Mr Cook, 39, was previously head of BHF Bank in the US, where he specialised in leveraged lending.

He will report jointly to Christopher Carter, head of European corporate and investment banking, and Mark Patterson, managing director, investment banking division leveraged finance.

WHEN is a hostile bid really hostile? This question occurs to me as WH Smith sells off its Waterstone's chain to EMI, announces a share buyback and sees its share price hit 473.5p. When Tim Waterstone launched his "hostile" bid for the chain six months ago using corporate finance team Peter Thompson and Andrew Bracey of SBC Warburg, WH Smith's share price languished at 370p. The company's boss Richard Handover huffed and puffed and declared that there would be no change in strategy.

Now he appears to have implemented the Warburg duo's strategy to the letter, and the share price is positively blooming. Perhaps Mr Handover should send Messrs Thompson and Bracey a bottle of bubbly for their troubles?

A CAMBRIDGE-based firm has just published what it claims is the most expensive history book ever, at a mere pounds 600 a pop. Yuki - Twenty Years has been commissioned by the famous Japanese-born clothes designer, now based in Britain, called Yuki.

Appropriately enough during British Fashion Week, the book, featuring lavish illustrations and only the most expensive paper and bindings, celebrates Yuki's 20 years in the rag trade. Yuki designed clothes worn by the late Princess Diana during one of her visits to Japan, I am told. Meanwhile the publishers, Book Production Consultants, are celebrating their own Silver Jubilee this year, but they say their own commemorative book will be a more modest affair.

ASH & LACY, West Midlands metal bashers, have appointed David Probert chairman-designate to succeed David Fletcher on 19 May following the group's annual general meeting. Ash & Lacy said Mr Probert is due to retire as an executive of W Canning shortly before taking up his new role, but he will continue as non-executive chairman of W Canning.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Arts and Entertainment
The teaser trailer has provoked more questions than answers
filmBut what is Bond's 'secret' that Moneypenny is talking about?
Sport
footballDoes Hodgson's England team have an identity yet?
News
news
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
Sport
Lewis Hamilton secured his second straight pole of the season
f1Vettel beats Rosberg into third after thunderstorm delays qualifying
Travel
travel Dreamland Margate, Britain’s oldest amusement park, is set to reopen
News
Founders James Brown and Tim Southwell with a mock-up of the first ever ‘Loaded’ magazine in 1994
media
News
Threlfall says: 'I am a guardian of the reality keys. I think I drive directors nuts'
people
Voices
voices The group has just unveiled a billion dollar plan to help nurse the British countryside back to health
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

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

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Recruitment Genius: Retirement Coordinator - Financial Services

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: To provide a prompt, friendly and efficient se...

Recruitment Genius: Annuities / Pensions Administrator

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: You will be the first point of contact for all...

Ashdown Group: HR, Payroll & Benefits Officer - Altrincham - up to £24,000.

£18000 - £24000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: HR, Payroll & Benefits Of...

Ashdown Group: Learning and Development Programme Manager

£35000 - £38000 per annum + benefits : Ashdown Group: A highly successful, int...

Day In a Page

The saffron censorship that governs India: Why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression

The saffron censorship that governs India

Zareer Masani reveals why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression
Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Supreme Court rules Dominic Grieve's ministerial veto was invalid
Distressed Zayn Malik fans are cutting themselves - how did fandom get so dark?

How did fandom get so dark?

Grief over Zayn Malik's exit from One Direction seemed amusing until stories of mass 'cutting' emerged. Experts tell Gillian Orr the distress is real, and the girls need support
The galaxy collisions that shed light on unseen parallel Universe

The cosmic collisions that have shed light on unseen parallel Universe

Dark matter study gives scientists insight into mystery of space
The Swedes are adding a gender-neutral pronoun to their dictionary

Swedes introduce gender-neutral pronoun

Why, asks Simon Usborne, must English still struggle awkwardly with the likes of 's/he' and 'they'?
Disney's mega money-making formula: 'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan

Disney's mega money-making formula

'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan
Lobster has gone mainstream with supermarket bargains for £10 or less - but is it any good?

Lobster has gone mainstream

Anthea Gerrie, raised on meaty specimens from the waters around Maine, reveals how to cook up an affordable feast
Easter 2015: 14 best decorations

14 best Easter decorations

Get into the Easter spirit with our pick of accessories, ornaments and tableware
Paul Scholes column: Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season

Paul Scholes column

Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season
Inside the Kansas greenhouses where Monsanto is 'playing God' with the future of the planet

The future of GM

The greenhouses where Monsanto 'plays God' with the future of the planet
Britain's mild winters could be numbered: why global warming is leaving UK chillier

Britain's mild winters could be numbered

Gulf Stream is slowing down faster than ever, scientists say
Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Donation brings total raised by Homeless Veterans campaign to at least £1.25m
Oh dear, the most borrowed book at Bank of England library doesn't inspire confidence

The most borrowed book at Bank of England library? Oh dear

The book's fifth edition is used for Edexcel exams
Cowslips vs honeysuckle: The hunt for the UK’s favourite wildflower

Cowslips vs honeysuckle

It's the hunt for UK’s favourite wildflower
Child abuse scandal: Did a botched blackmail attempt by South African intelligence help Cyril Smith escape justice?

Did a botched blackmail attempt help Cyril Smith escape justice?

A fresh twist reveals the Liberal MP was targeted by the notorious South African intelligence agency Boss