Scottish Business Briefing – May 3rd 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

RBS returns to profit and eyes government stake sale next year

Royal Bank of Scotland has reported its best quarterly profit since 2011, paving the way

for the UK government to begin selling down its stake as soon as next year. Chairman Sir

Philip Hampton said the group’s balance sheet was “substantially fixed” and the lender is

nearing a position where the UK government could start trying to offload its 82 per cent

stake.

Dunfermline Building Society brand ‘to disappear’

ONE of the oldest names in Scottish finance will disappear from high streets next year under plans by the Nationwide to close half of the Dunfermline’s branches and integrate the rest into its own expanding operations. The Nationwide, which rescued the 144-year- old institution following its collapse in 2009 during the financial crisis, said it would re-deploy staff where possible but could not rule out compulsory job losses.

Lloyds unsure on future of new TSB bank

LLOYDS Banking Group is yet to decide whether to establish the headquarters of the

new TSB Bank in Scotland after a deal to sell 632 branches to the Co-operative Group

fell apart last month. The bank is still working on plans to spin out the branches into a

separate bank floated on the London Stock Exchange.

Read all today’s banking news from scotsman.com

TECHNOLOGY

Dell expecting Games to leave lasting legacy

DELL, the computer giant that built its name on making PCs more affordable to businesses and consumers, is counting on next summer’s Commonwealth Games leaving a positive legacy for its business as well as the host city of Glasgow. The company, which employs 550 staff at City Park in Glasgow, will have a key role in running the Games as the sole provider of technology to its 40 venues.

Read all today’s technology news from scotsman.com

ECONOMICS

Enterprise budget feels the squeeze

Scottish Enterprise, the economic development agency, is to spend more than £336 million this year as it looks to accelerate Scotland’s recovery. Although the agency’s total budget for 2013-14 represents a 10 per cent increase on last year, all of that rise is additional Scottish Government funding for a renewable energy investment fund. On a like-for-like basis the budget has dipped by £1.2m.

SCOTSMAN CONFERENCE

The Economics of Independence 2013 – 4 June, Edinburgh

Join delegates for this truly unmissable event as expert speakers including: Nicola Sturgeon, Alistair Darling, Rupert Soames, Jim McColl and leading academics as they debate arguably the most crucial issues in the Scottish independence debate.

(The Scotsman Conferences)

Read all today’s economics news from scotsman.com

ENERGY & UTILITIES

Trap Oil signs up partners for licensing round

NORTH Sea driller Trap Oil revealed a new strategic partnership yesterday and hiked its interest in two fields in a bid to cement its position as a well operator. The firm, which bought Aberdeenshire-based Reach Oil & Gas in 2011, said it had teamed up with Abu Dhabi-owned Taqa Bratani and a subsidiary of Japanese conglomerate Itochu to bid for exploration licences in UK waters.

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

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