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.
Fragility of service sector seen in CBI survey
Consumer services such as bars and hotels dragged service sector business levels down in the last three months, according to the worse-than-expected results of the Confederation of British Industry’s quarterly survey, which is published today (Scotsman).
Scots businesses face threat of £400m tax bill
Scottish companies that used tax-avoidance schemes run by a leading accountancy firm could face combined tax bills of up to £400 million to settle with HMRC and avoid the schemes being challenged. Premier Strategies, a division of RSM Tenon, is estimated to have sheltered up to £1 billion for dozens of sizeable Scottish companies over the past decade, avoiding £400m of taxes (Herald).
Currency exchange in tie-up with Scottish Chambers
A FOREIGN exchange business has sealed a major partnership deal with Scottish Chambers of Commerce. Scot FX will operate a white-label service on behalf of the chambers allowing thousands of members access to a dedicated system for foreign money transfers (Herald).
ENERGY & UTILITIES
Investment gushes into North Sea
INVESTMENT in Britain’s oil and gas industry has soared to record levels on the back of the UK government’s sweeping tax reforms for the offshore sector and is set to keep growing this year, according to the latest industry report. Last year, oil firms invested £11.4 billion in the North Sea and the waters west of Shetland, encouraged by new tax breaks and assurances on decommissioning costs (http://www.scotsman.com/business/energy-and-utilities/investment-gushes-into-north-sea-1-2808010|Scotsman|Scotsman}).
FOOD, DRINK & AGRICULTURE
Scottish delegation to attend Gulfood event
A delegation of Scottish companies in the Middle East is to attend Gulfood, one of the world’s biggest food and drink trade shows. Scottish Development International (SDI), in partnership with industry leadership group Scotland Food & Drink, is hosting 12 Scots firms at the Dubai show, including a number exhibiting at Gulfood for the first time (P&J)
MEDIA & LEISURE
Style Academy looks to American market
A SCOTTISH company offering art and craft courses in a manor house on Royal Deeside is seeking to attract American clients with a launch in a New York hotel this week. Former private chef Andrew Mellon set up The Style Academy last year and is offering a hugely expanded range of courses this year, having reached agreement with a number of country estates (Scotsman).