Scottish Business Briefing - August 5th 2013

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Picture: PA
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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

Investors voice fears over RBS split

INDEPENDENT shareholders are understood to have signalled to Royal Bank of Scotland chairman Sir Philip Hampton their strong opposition to any break-up of the taxpayer‑backed bank. The groundswell of opposition comes as Hampton suggested at RBS’s interim results on Friday that only independent minority shareholders would be able to vote on any plan to split off the bank’s poorly-performing loans into a separate entity.

ENERGY

North Sea to ‘smash records’

The North Sea oil and gas industry is in line for another record year of investment, according to the UK Government.Energy Minister Michael Fallon said yesterday that the offshore sector was on course to smash last year’s total thanks to multibillion-pound projects which will extend the life of the industry for decades to come.

RETAIL

Michelle Mone’s firm MJM makes £550,000 loss

THE lingerie and swimwear firm run by Scottish entrepreneur Michelle Mone has made a significant loss, its latest accounts show. MJM International made a £547,018 loss in the 18 months to October 2012, according to accounts submitted to Companies House. And in the previous 12 months, the firm, which has its headquarters in East Kilbride, made a profit of just £1,418, the accounts show.

TRANSPORT & INDUSTRY

Backlash over cost of bidding for public sector work

SMALL businesses have lashed out at the spiralling cost of pitching for public sector contracts after new figures showed the burden of tendering for construction work had rocketed to nearly £100 million each year. But public bodies hit back over the blacklash, claiming they were “damned if they do and damned if we don’t” over the awarding of deals.

Record turnover as GAP defies market

GAP Group, the Glasgow-based plant and tool hire company, hiked profits by more than one-third in its latest financial year, defying tough market conditions, as turnover surged 14% to a record level of nearly £100 million on market share gains. The company, in which joint managing directors and brothers Douglas and Iain Anderson each have stakes of about 40%, raised pre-tax profits by about 36% to £8.4 million in the year to March 31, from £6.2m in the prior 12 months.

Boiler-firm buyout suggests the economy is warming up

THE Pirrie brothers’ Nevis ­Capital investment firm has led the buyout of a Scottish boiler specialist and is eyeing more deals amid signs the economic recovery is gathering pace. Nevis Capital acquired a majority stake in Glasgow-based James Ramsay in what is believed to have been a seven-figure deal. The buy-out allows Nevis to add a firm that specialises in installing and maintaining complex boilers used in places like factories and universities to its portfolio of engineering firms.

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