Scottish Business Briefing - August 13th 2013

A significant increase in house prices has been reported in Scotland. Picture: Jane Barlow

A significant increase in house prices has been reported in Scotland. Picture: Jane Barlow

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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.

FINANCE

Asian middle classes lift Pru but Hunt’s UK test laid bare

Prudential yesterday promised that its exposure to Asia’s growing middle class will keep hitting the sweet spot but warned that new European rules will impact on its already weak UK operations. The insurer, which employs 2,200 people at its base in Stirling, reported a 22 per cent surge in first-half profits and said it was on track to meet or beat the financial targets it set itself three years ago. (Scotsman)

Read all today’s finance news from scotsman.com

MANAGEMENT

Procurement body Scottish Futures Trust saves £132m

Procurement body Scottish Futures Trust (SFT) claims to have saved the public purse £132 million in the last 12 months. Tomorrow, the trust will mark the opening of one of two new schools commissioned as one package – Eastwood in East Renfrewshire while the other, in Lasswade in West Lothian, will open on 21 August. (Scotsman)

Law firm reshuffle after focus on ‘home’ work

THE ranking of Scotland’s largest law firms has been reshaped by the takeover of McGrigors by Pinsent Masons and the merger of Burness with Paull & Williamsons, according to figures released by the Lawyer magazine. A new “big five” has emerged, with Dundas & Wilson (D&W) securing top spot when ranked by turnover and Brodies overtaking Maclay Murray & Spens (MMS) for second place. (Scotsman)

Read all today’s management news from scotsman.com

ECONOMY

House prices ‘continue to rise’ in Scotland

Housing prices and demand are continuing to grow in Scotland, according to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors. Its report said there was “a considerable rise” in the number of would-be buyers looking to enter the market in July. The survey recorded a balance of 52% more chartered surveyors reporting increases in demand. (BBC)

Read all today’s economics news from scotsman.com

FOOD, DRINK & AGRICULTURE

Browns Food Group turnover and profits soar in strong year

BROWNS Food Group has almost doubled its profits as it benefited from solid growth across its portfolio of businesses. Accounts filed at Companies House for 2012 show turnover surged 13% from £104.3 million to £117.5m, mainly due to UK sales rising 12.5% from £103m to £115.9m. That helped pre-tax profits at the Kirkconnel, Dumfriesshire, business grow 87% from £3.2m to almost £6m. (Herald)

(http://www.scotsman.com/business/food-drink-agriculture|Read all today’s food, drink and agriculture news from scotsman.com|Click here}

SCOTSMAN CONFERENCE

The Future of the UK Aerospace Industry, 5 Sept - Prestwick

Full agenda now available. Featuring expert industry speakers including: Scott McLarty of Spirit AeroSystems, Alan Fraser of BAE Systems; Jim Houston of Woodward & Gavin Campbell of Bombardier Aerospace. See The Scotsman Conferences website for more details.

MEDIA, TECH & LEISURE

Bedi OralCare swallows angel funding

KELVIN Capital and the Scottish Investment Bank have pumped £140,000 of seed funding into Edinburgh-based Bedi OralCare, which is developing dental products for disabled people. The Glasgow-based business angel network and Scottish Enterprise’s investment arm described founder Raman Bedi as a “leading figure in the international dental industry”. (Scotsman)

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

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