People & Business

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SIR GRAEME ODGERS has been appointed a non-executive director of Southern Electric, his first new job since stepping down as chairman of the Monopolies and Mergers Commission last December. Sir Graeme said last year that he was leaving the MMC in order to get back into business before it was too late to rack up a reasonable pension.

Southern Electric, the only independent British-owned electricity company, has also appointed Bruce Farmer as chairman-designate, to succeed Ken Coates on 1 April. Dr Farmer is currently chairman and was recently chief executive of Morgan Crucible.

Sir Graeme has a lengthy and distinguished CV. He was chief executive of Alfred McAlpine from 1990 until joining the MMC in 1993. He was managing director of British Telecom from 1986 to 1990, and before that finance director and then managing director of Tarmac. Sir Graeme also had spells with GEC and the DTI. No doubt some more non-exec posts are on the way.

GARY SMITH has snatched Keith Bradshaw from the world of nursing homes to become non-executive chairman of Winchester Entertainment, the film and TV company Mr Smith founded five years ago.

Mr Smith has been seeking to split his role as chairman and chief executive for some time, and reckons recruiting someone with Mr Bradshaw's experience is quite a coup. Mr Bradshaw recently sold his Takare nursing home company, which he started from scratch in 1979, to Bupa for pounds 270m.

Mr Smith says: "We're growing fairly quickly so Keith's a good person to have, with his experience of managing a growing company. He's got good contacts in the City as well."

Winchester is listed on AIM and scored a hit last year with the film Shooting Fish, a comedy which has grossed $12m world-wide so far. It opens in the US soon. The company, based in Kingly Street in Soho, London, also makes children's TV programmes.

Mr Smith says Mr Bradshaw will mostly work on the film finance side. As part of the deal Mr Bradshaw has bought 9 per cent of Winchester's shares for just under pounds 1m, leaving Mr Smith as the company's biggest shareholder with a 26 per cent stake.

THERE'S ONE thing worse than a Scotsman and an Englishman having a scrap, and that's two Scotsmen having a feud. And over "principles of accountancy", of all things.

Ron Paterson, head of Ernst & Young's technical services department and author of "UK GAAP" (don't ask), has loosed off yet another broadside at fellow Scot Sir David Tweedie, head of the Accounting Standards Board, over the ASB's long-awaited "Statement of Principles."

Sir David first issued a draft of his principles over three years ago, prompting Mr Paterson to lead a campaign to have them drastically altered. Yesterday Mr Paterson issued a paper titled "Time for Action", which demanded the immediate publication of Sir David's latest proposals. The paper came with an accompanying statement which asked: "Why are we waiting?"

Perhaps they should just decide it with pistols at 12 paces.

CAMBRIDGE University's Business School is breaking out with a new lecturer for prison studies. And no, this does not mean courses for white collar criminals in how to while away the hours at Ford Open Prison.

Allan Webster is joining the appropriately named Judge Institute of Management Studies as a part-time lecturer in public sector management. His job will be to enable senior prison officers to "develop a strategic approach to leadership". Mr Webster arrives amongst the glittering spires with plenty of experience, not least from his time as a senior governor in the Scottish Prison Service. Anyone thinking of skiving off lectures, beware.

GREENWICH NatWest, the global debts market division of NatWest, has made a number of appointments in sales and trading. Avril Pomper joins as a director and head of Swiss credit sales, from Paribas Capital Markets. Natasha Jacobs, also from Paribas, joins as assistant director of Swiss credit sales. Roberta Cristino becomes director responsible for Italian sales from Societe Generale, while Mina Namba joins Greenwich NatWest in Tokyo as a credit trader from CSFB.

Andrew McGuire has been appointed director responsible for eurodollar trading, joining from Deutsche Morgan Grenfell. And finally, Duncan Sankey joins as a director and head of credit research.

CITY LAWYERS aren't all hard-hearted blocks of ice after all. Herbert Smith, the City firm, has raised pounds 1,800 for Macmillan Cancer Relief by hosting a charity quiz night for bankers in the Square Mile. A dozen teams of City banks, each joined by members of Herbert Smith's corporate finance department, competed in seven gruelling rounds of general knowledge questions and a marathon round. First prize went to Lazard Brothers.