News

Apple's disappointing update this week sent shares in most of its suppliers tumbling, but smartphone parts maker Laird got City approval after its strategy update yesterday.

Severn Trent fined record £36m after misreporting water leakages

Severn Trent, the Midlands water company, is to pay a record £36m fine and pledged to cut customer bills after it pleaded guilty yesterday to orchestrating one of the largest customer overcharging scandals ever perpetrated in the UK.

Leading article: Private water companies must do more to deliver

The privatisation of utilities proceeded from the principle that market competition would offer an improvement on state monopoly. It would help keep prices down and encourage better service – at least, this is how it was sold to consumers. For governments the expectation was that commercial companies would, by their very nature, run leaner, more efficient operations and so be able to invest more to update old infrastructure.

Water firm faces £35.8m fine

Severn Trent Water was today facing a record £35.8 million fine for deliberately providing false data to industry regulator Ofwat and providing poor customer service.

BAA's new chief executive Colin Matthews told to focus on Heathrow

Sir Nigel Rudd has told Colin Matthews, his new hand-picked chief executive of BAA, that his top priority at the embattled airport group should be to overhaul operations at Heathrow, infamous for crumbling infrastructure, delayed flights and lost bags.

CVC gives up on Biffa as rivals consider joint bid

The private equity giant CVC Capital Partners has walked away from a take-over bid for the waste management group Biffa, which accepted a £1.2bn offer this month. This comes as two suitors have held talks about teaming up for a counter bid.

Biffa poised for new offer

Private equity boss Guy Hands and French industrial group Suez were today being linked to a possible counter offer for waste disposal group Biffa.

Battle for Biffa: suitors aim to gatecrash deal

A takeover battle is set to erupt for Biffa with up to three suitors close to gatecrashing a £1.2bn private equity deal accepted by the UK waste group.

Biffa auction expected as it opens books to bidders

Biffa in effect put itself up for sale yesterday after agreeing to open its books to private equity bidders at the third time of asking, a move that could trigger a bidding war for the waste management company.

Wine: Something for the weekend?

2005 El Dueño Chardonnay; 2004 Salomon Pfaffenberg Riesling; 2004 Meyer Fonné Tokay Pinot Gris

The Investment Column: It's still safe to stick with Northern Rock

Severn Trent is clearly one for the low-risk investor; Only the divi makes Dawson worth holding

The Investment Column: Severn Trent worth tapping in to

DAT Group could still be a buy for the risk-takers; There's a gusher in view at Burren Energy

Severn Trent in 'robust' talks with Ofwat over water bill rises

Severn Trent, the Midlands-based water company, yesterday gave the clearest indication yet that it may take the industry regulator to an appeal if it fails to get approval for a sufficiently large increase in bills.

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