Business news in brief: Crieff | Standard Life

Perthshire resort Crieff Hydro is planning to plough millions of pounds into the four-star venue over the coming years after enjoying a rise in sales and profits.

The hotel, which opened its doors in 1868, said a £1.4 million investment in its facilities helped grow revenues by 4.4 per cent to £17.7m in the year to 28 February. Pre-tax profits rose 4.6 per cent to £633,145.

Along with plans for ongoing investment in the existing resort, Crieff Hydro is aiming to embark on a long-term £100m expansion to create a nursing home, 200 holiday lodges and a nature reserve on its estate.

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Standard Life takes on customer boss

Standard Life has hired John McGuigan to take up the newly-created position of customer operations director, the life and pensions giant said yesterday.

McGuigan, who will take a place on Standard’s UK and Europe executive team, joins from O2-owner Telefónica in Germany where he was managing director and board member.

Paul Matthews, head of UK and Europe at Standard Life, said: “John will be responsible for developing our already highly successful customer services department to create a world class operation.”

Back-up for Bank after IT troubles

The Bank of England was forced to activate back-up procedures to keep critical payment settlement services running after it suffered IT problems.

Its “real-time gross settlement” system is crucial for handling settlements between banks, handling an average £570 billion of payments a day. A glitch was said to have been caused by a “failure in a piece of hardware”. It led to the Bank issuing a brief statement saying: “The Bank has been experiencing some technical IT problems. There is no impact on critical payment and settlement services.”