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.
Scottish independence: Call for two ‘oil funds’
Scotland should establish two “oil funds” immediately after independence to ensure remaining North Sea reserves provide a “lasting benefit for future generations”, a group of economists has found. The Scottish Government-appointed Fiscal Commission working group said a short-term “stabilisation” fund should be set up to buffer Scotland’s finances against volatile oil prices, while a long-term Norwegian-style sovereign wealth fund should also be created for decades to come (Scotsman).
Independence White Paper: A business plan for Scotland? - 3rd December – Edinburgh
Will the forthcoming SNP blueprint for independence help provide the answers for undecided Scots ahead of next year’s referendum?
Join us to hear keynote speakers such as Chris vam der Kuyl among others from the world of politics and business to debate the merits of the white paper and then you will get the opportunity to ask the questions that matter to you. Visit the Scotsman Conferences website for more details.
FOOD, DRINK & AGRICULTURE
Life’s so tasty for shortbread giant Walkers
WALKERS Shortbread has hailed a “welcome” return to profit growth after the Aberlour-based firm shifted its focus on to its own brands rather than lower-margin private label work. Managing director Jim Walker told The Scotsman that the family-run firm’s headcount had risen to a record 1,660 staff as production accelerates for the key Christmas sales period (Scotsman).
Clydesdale deal takes the biscuit
BORDERS Biscuits is to expand the size of its production base in Lanark by a third after securing a finance deal from Clydesdale Bank. The company remained tight-lipped last night over how much cash it was borrowing after switching to the bank, but described the figure as “substantial”. A 1,620sq m warehouse will now be built at the firm’s 4,750sq m site, which already produces some 300,000 packets of biscuits each week (Scotsman).
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Cash and carry firm United Wholesale praises staff for results
UNITED Wholesale Grocers has praised the dedication and performance of its workforce as profits edged up 1.27% at the cash and carry and grocery distribution company last year. The Glasgow-based business, which operates cash and carry depots in Springburn and Polmadie, has reported pre-tax profits of £1.295 million for the year ended December 31, 2012, up from £1.279m in 2011 (Herald).
TRANSPORT & INDUSTRY
Teleperformance ‘to create 1,000 Scottish jobs’
A Paris-based contact centre firm has confirmed it is to create up to 1,000 new jobs in Scotland. Teleperformance said the jobs in Airdrie, Erskine, Glasgow and Kilmarnock would include customer service advisors, trainers and team managers. The company said the announcement would see its Scottish workforce expand to about 4,000 (BBC).
MEDIA, TECH & LEISURE
Short circuit for Wolfson shares
SHARES in audio chip maker Wolfson Microelectronics slumped by 15 per cent today after a revenue warning that analysts blamed on the decline of smartphone firm Blackberry. Edinburgh-based Wolfson didn’t name Canada’s Blackberry, saying only that a “major customer” had cancelled orders following a strategic review of its business (Scotsman).