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Online sales climbed a record breaking 58% as HoF celebrated 'best ever' Christmas

A test for an IPO market that has been tricky for all but the very best

Opinions might be divided on the group's long-term prospects, but Ocado is likely to launch its IPO on Wednesday. In doing so it will join others seeking a listing in what has been a difficult market so far this year.

Investors dig deep to support Rothschild's mining venture

Nat Rothschild's new mining investment group, Vallar, closed its £700m flotation yesterday, making it the biggest initial public offering (IPO) in London this year.

New oil field 'one of region's largest finds'

An oil find in the UK North Sea has the potential to be one of the region's biggest discoveries of recent years, an exploration firm said today.

Nat Rothschild's mining investment group Vallar to raise £600m via IPO

Vallar, the investment group set up by Nat Rothschild to invest in mining assets, announced yesterday that it intends to float on the London Stock Exchange and spend as much as £5bn on projects within the next two years.

The business on...Nat Rothschild, Financier, Vallar

Why is he in the news?

The Honourable Nathaniel Philip Victor James Rothschild, entrepreneur and scion of the famous banking family, said yesterday that he was preparing to float his latest venture, Vallar, which is expected to invest up to £5bn in the mining industry.

US tycoon backs Virgin Money's growth

Wilbur Ross promises to inject up to £600m into Sir Richard Branson's operation

Eco-warrior turns green on his voyage across the Pacific

Banking heir hit by seasickness nine days into 8,000-mile trip

De Rothschild claim conman jailed for 18 years

An "accomplished conman" who claimed to be the illegitimate son of financier Edmund De Rothschild was today sentenced to 18 years in prison for defrauding a single mother and raping a schoolgirl.

Megève: Less is more for chic French skiing

Megève is steeped in ski heritage, but this smart resort has few British winter visitors. Stephen Wood relishes the upmarket ambience

France's GDF to sweeten UK generator offer

GDF Suez, the French power giant, is considering a revamped bid for International Power (IP), a £5bn independent power generator.

Banks bid for £2bn Arriva deal

SNCF, the French national rail operator, will move closer to a £5bn-turnover merger with Arriva, the British Ftse 250 transport group, with the appointment of deal advisers this month.

Zola at risk as Cellino closes in on deal

Gianfranco Zola's job as West Ham United manager looked increasingly insecure yesterday as sources close to Massimo Cellino, the club's most recent suitor, claimed a takeover is "99.98 per cent" certain to go ahead.

West Ham braced for heavy FA fine after crowd trouble verdict

West Ham face a severe punishment after the club was found guilty yesterday by the FA of two charges of failing to control their fans following an investigation into serious crowd trouble at a Carling Cup match against Millwall at Upton Park last August.

Mandelson uncut: Election rift with PM

Business Secretary rejects Gordon Brown's class war strategy and predicts the general election will be a close-run thing
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University Edible Garden, Leeds – a sustainable garden in the centre of the university, passers-by can help themselves to the home-grown produce
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Rock band Led Zeppelin in the early 1970s
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High-flyer: Chris Pratt in 'Guardians of the Galaxy'
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Van Gaal said that his challenge in taking over Bobby Robson's Barcelona team in 1993 has been easier than the task of resurrecting the current United side
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Day In a Page

Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – MS Swiss Corona - seven nights from £999pp
Lake Maggiore, Orta and the Matterhorn – seven nights from £899pp
Sicily – seven nights from £939pp
Pompeii, Capri and the Bay of Naples - seven nights from £799pp
Istanbul Ephesus & Troy – six nights from £859pp
Mary Rose – two nights from £319pp
Save the tiger: The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The big cats kept in captivity to perform for paying audiences and then, when dead, their bodies used to fortify wine
A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery all included in top 50 hidden spots in the UK

A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery

Introducing the top 50 hidden spots in Britain
Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

How a disease that has claimed fewer than 2,000 victims in its history has earned a place in the darkest corner of the public's imagination
Chris Pratt: From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

He was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star
How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

Broadcasting plays and exhibitions to cinemas is a sure-fire box office smash
Shipping container hotels: Pop-up hotels filling a niche

Pop-up hotels filling a niche

Spending the night in a shipping container doesn't sound appealing, but these mobile crash pads are popping up at the summer's biggest events
Native American headdresses are not fashion accessories

Feather dust-up

A Canadian festival has banned Native American headwear. Haven't we been here before?
Boris Johnson's war on diesel

Boris Johnson's war on diesel

11m cars here run on diesel. It's seen as a greener alternative to unleaded petrol. So why is London's mayor on a crusade against the black pump?
5 best waterproof cameras

Splash and flash: 5 best waterproof cameras

Don't let water stop you taking snaps with one of these machines that will take you from the sand to meters deep
Louis van Gaal interview: Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era

Louis van Gaal interview

Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era
Will Gore: The goodwill shown by fans towards Alastair Cook will evaporate rapidly if India win the series

Will Gore: Outside Edge

The goodwill shown by fans towards Alastair Cook will evaporate rapidly if India win the series
The children were playing in the street with toy guns. The air strikes were tragically real

The air strikes were tragically real

The children were playing in the street with toy guns
Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – The British, as others see us

Britain as others see us

Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite
How did our legends really begin?

How did our legends really begin?

Applying the theory of evolution to the world's many mythologies
Watch out: Lambrusco is back on the menu

Lambrusco is back on the menu

Naff Seventies corner-shop staple is this year's Aperol Spritz