People & Business: Breuer tells how every dog will have his D Day

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The Independent Online
ROLF BREUER, Deutsche Bank's chairman, ruffled a few feathers a fortnight ago when he said that staff to be kept on following the merger with Bankers Trust would be selected on the basis of "Best of Breed".

This prompted some wags among the London-based employees of the two banks to wonder whether they should sport "Best of Breed" badges in true Cruft's style.

Now Herr Breuer has dubbed the day the merger will reach completion as "D Day". Obviously he has a more finely developed sense of humour than most Germans are given credit for.

THE ACQUISITION by Citigate of fellow City spin doctors Dewe Rogerson a couple of months ago has not been all sweetness and light, I am afraid to say. First there was unhappiness among some former Citigate managers that their new Dewe colleagues were getting paid a fatter bonus following the deal.

Now the two sets of staff are holding separate Christmas parties. The Citigate people held their knees-up last week at the Bleeding Heart, a popular restaurant in Hatton Garden. Their Dewe Rogerson colleagues will party the night away in South Kensington tonight at, appropriately enough, the Natural History Museum.

WHEN YOU are 33, a bachelor, and have a reputed personal fortune of pounds 3bn putting you at number 70 in the Forbes magazine list of the world's richest people, you can afford to have some fun.

Taking your Miss UK girlfriend on a cruise on your 200-foot motor yacht in the Caribbean might be good enough for most, but Ernesto Bertarelli, Italian-born and living in Switzerland, has for some time enjoyed roaring around Lake Geneva on his 40-foot racing trimaran, Alinghi.

Now he has allocated a few millions to buying a fleet of eight, nearly identical 80-foot yachts and underwriting a World Championship circuit which takes them around northern Europe next summer and back to the Mediterranean in the autumn.

Mr Bertarelli has used his own money to pay for the enterprise and intends to race himself. He made his pile from his company Ares-Serono, a pioneer of fertility drugs and treatments for multiple sclerosis, among other things.

It sounds a daring enterprise for one so commercially valuable to his 4,000 employees, but bravery seems to be his hallmark. His spokesman, a Swiss Frenchman called Nicolas de Saussure, turned up yesterday in Marseilles - the home of the French national anthem and part of the region which assisted with the building of the yachts at nearby La Ciotat - and announced at the launch of his master's yachting enterprise: "The presentation will take place in English, so that everyone understands well."

BACK IN the good old days, the lifestyle of a geologist for an oil company very much resembled that of Indiana Jones, scouting for the black gold around the more far-flung and exotic parts of the globe. Now the job is mostly done "from offices and oil rigs", according to Richard Haythornthwaite, who started his career as a geologist with BP in 1978.

Since then Mr Haythornthwaite, who celebrates his 42nd birthday today, has risen to hold several key management posts at BP, Premier Oil and latterly Blue Circle Industries (BCI). Yesterday he was named group chief executive of BCI, to succeed Keith Orrell-Jones when the latter leaves next July.

Mr Haythornthwaite's other great love is modern art. He has advised Nicholas Serota, director of the Tate Gallery, on marketing strategies and is currently a trustee of the Whitechapel Art Gallery.

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