News Mike Ashley has mellowed in recent years, so his stake in Debenhams surprised the City

The Sports Direct tycoon is well known for keeping rivals guessing. Simon Neville attempts to unravel his stakebuilding plan for Debenhams

Echelon clients bring lawsuit against IG

IG Group, the spread betting company, has been slapped with a €25m (£21m) lawsuit over the collapse of a Scottish wealth manager two years ago.

'In play' gaming boosts Sportingbet

Sportingbet said the increased popularity of betting on live sporting events helped drive revenues 27 per cent higher in the year to 31 July. The online gaming group said such "in play" gaming accounted for 61 per cent of its core sports betting business in the past year, up from 56 per cent in 2009.

Sportingbet pays $33m to avoid charges in the US

Sportingbet, the online gambling company which sponsors the Premiership's Wolverhampton Wanderers, has agreed to pay $33m (£21m) to avoid charges in the US, where it operated illegally for almost a decade.

Small Talk: WorldSpreads takes a gamble to boost business

'When you go into Tesco, you don't just buy a loaf of bread and a pint of milk, do you?" asks Conor Foley, the chief executive of WorldSpreads, the Alternative Investment Market (Aim)-listed financial spread-betting group. Indeed not. And Mr Foley is hoping that the same philosophy applies to his industry after last week announcing that his group would be offering punters a zero-spreads option on some of its most popular markets.

Investment Column: Shaftesbury sees life on the sunny side

Sportingbet; Findel

World Cup sees online poker dip

The internet gambling operator PartyGaming said its online casino business had continued to drive strong growth, helping to offset the impact of a slump in poker players during the football World Cup.

IG cashes in on uncertainty

The spread betting company IG Group forecast a 25 per cent leap in profits this year after recent stock market turbulence boosted business.

Business Diary: 29/05/2010

Bonus counsel from Kerviel

Some very helpful advice from eFinancialCareers, the online employment site for the City.

IG chief gives up rise despite big increase in profits

The boss of Britain's biggest spread-betting company plans to forgo his impending pay rise despite the company reporting a 30 per cent surge in pre-tax profits before one-offs. IG's chief executive, Tim Howkins, said he would forgo the rise as "it didn't seem right to be taking one at this time".

Parry vows to get tough on corruption with new task-force

As suspicious betting patterns cast a cloud over Wimbledon, Rick Parry, the outgoing chief executive of Liverpool FC, was yesterday appointed as the chairman of a new "anti- corruption" panel set up by Sports Minister Gerry Sutcliffe. The panel's job is to assess the threat of betting-related corruption in British sport and recommend ways to combat it.

Aintree makes sombre start

Exotic Dancer one of two horses to die on opening day as Denman is also a faller

Tim Lamb: This corrosive influence must be stopped

Match-fixing and corrupt sports betting is cheating at its worst, often perpetrated by people whom you should suspect the least. It is corrosive in all levels of sport and that is why the sporting community takes it so seriously. From the spectator to the social player, from the punter to the professional, the damage it causes is inestimable.

Car Choice: You don’t have to look far for a fun and practical roadster

David Hughes wrote a simple email, which read: Daihatsu Copen, Smart Roadster or Ford Streetka? Further prodding revealed that he owns a Mazda MX5, but now wants better fuel economy, reliability, build integrity and the obvious fun factor. He is considering models over five years old for £5,000 or so.

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