Scottish Business Briefing – May 30th 2013

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WELCOME to scotsman.com’s Scottish Business Briefing. Every morning we bring you a comprehensive round-up of all news affecting business in Scotland today.

BANKING

Brewin Dolphin raises £40m to fund efficiency drive

Wealth manager Brewin Dolphin has raised almost £40 million from the markets in order to accelerate its efficiency drive. The group unveiled the placing alongside interim results showing a rise in pre-tax profits to £23.8m in the six months to the end of March, compared to £18.9m a year earlier. The bull run on world markets helped it grow assets under management to £28.1 billion, from £25.9bn at the start of the period.

Read all today’s banking news from scotsman.com

ECONOMICS

Pakistan place to do business, delegates told

THE potential for Scottish companies doing business in Pakistan has been highlighted at a conference in Glasgow, where delegates were told the country is ripe for development by firms in the oil and gas, renewable energy and food and drink sectors. The event, staged by export body Scottish Development International, was staged as the UK Government targets growing the value of bilateral trade with Pakistan by 7% to £2.5 billion by 2015.

Read all today’s economics news from scotsman.com

ENERGY & UTILITIES

Fund takes £6m stake in oil technology company

The Business Growth Fund (BGF) has invested £6million in Petrotechnics, taking a minority stake in the Aberdeen oil and gas technology firm. Petrotechnics chief executive Phil Murray remains the majority shareholder following the deal.

Move gives Apollo space to expand

Apollo Offshore Engineering said yesterday it was on track for significant growth. The Aberdeen engineering design and analysis service firm plans to have a workforce of 100 and annual turnover of £10million by 2015. Apollo, set up only in 2010 and which now employs 40 staff, anticipates turnover to double this financial year to more than £3million. Clients include Stena Drilling, Conoco Phillips and Centrica.

Read all today’s energy and utilities news from scotsman.com

MEDIA & LEISURE

Dating site Cupid in talks to sell ‘casual’ sites

Online dating specialist Cupid has revealed that it is in early-stage talks over a possible bid for its “casual” websites. The Edinburgh-based firm, which recently rejected claims from a Ukranian newspaper that its staff posed as customers to encourage others to take out subscriptions, stressed there was no certainty of a deal emerging.

Read all today’s media and leisure news from scotsman.com

TECHNOLOGY

Iomart hails ‘excellent’ trading as profits jump 56%

Web hosting firm Iomart is searching for more takeover opportunities after a series of deals helped deliver a 56 per cent jump in annual profits. Chief executive and co-founder Angus MacSween told The Scotsman that the Glasgow-based firm receives at least one approach a week from companies looking to be bought over, but he was keen to focus on larger targets.

Read all today’s technology news from scotsman.com