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.
Scots unemployment figures fall by 7,000
UNEMPLOYMENT in Scotland fell by 7,000 to 196,000 between August and October this year, newly released figures have revealed. The Scottish unemployment rate is 7.1 per cent, which is below the average figure of 7.4 per cent for the whole of the UK. Employment in Scotland also increased by 11,000 during the three month period between August and October 2013. (Scotsman)
Braveheart blames half-year loss on Envestors arm
Investment manager Braveheart today revealed it had fallen into the red during the first half of the year because its former subsidiary Envestors fell victim to poor trading conditions. The Perth-based firm last week sold Envestors to a management buy-out team, having ruled that the London-based corporate finance adviser had not made a positive contribution to the group’s financial performance since its acquisition in 2010.
Halliburton in £20million swoop to buy energy firm
A small Aberdeen energy firm has been bought by a US oil service giant in a deal believed to be worth up to £20million. Energy Ventures – a venture capital firm dedicated to funding energy companies – has completed the sale of Intelligent Well Controls (IWC) to Halliburton, marking the firm’s 13th exit. The company first invested in IWC in January 2012 as part of its fourth fund. (Press & Journal)
French fashion chain in House of Fraser talks
Struggling House of Fraser, which owns Edinburgh retailing icon Jenners, is in talks to be acquired by the French department store giant Galeries Lafayette. House of Fraser (HoF), which also has Scottish retail billionaire Sir Tom Hunter as a significant minority shareholder, is said to be looking for a price tag of at least £450 million, according to industry sources.
TRANSPORT & INDUSTRY
Tullis Russell powers up for future efficiency
TULLIS Russell, the Fife-based paper maker and specialist coating manufacturer, has seen operating losses widen as it continued to grapple with rising input costs and wider economic uncertainty. But the company has predicted that its upcoming switch to a new biomass plant at its Markinch site will herald an improvement in its commercial fortunes. (Herald)
MEDIA, TECH & LEISURE
Glasgow hotels enjoyed record occupancy
Glasgow’s hotel sector has recorded its strongest November for seven years, as the city came close to being fully booked. The latest report by tourism market research specialist LJ Research, published today, shows that occupancy in the city averaged 83 per cent last month, and peaked at 98 per cent on Saturday, 23 November.