Director dealings

WITH a new factory coming on stream next month, directors at China Food Company are confident that 2010 will be a significant year for the company.

The business produces cooking sauces and animal feed products for the Chinese market and, although sales and profits fell during a challenging start to 2009, the company said momentum seen towards the end of the year was continuing.

Profits rose 62 per cent in the second half of the year, with margins also starting to recover. Last week chairman John McLean bought 13,570 shares at 33.5p each and non-executive director Derek Marsh bought 2,285 shares at a similar price. McLean now holds 243,655 shares and Marsh 58,478 shares.

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• Richard Menell, a non-executive director at Weir Group, has bought his first stake in the Glasgow-based company since joining the board last year, purchasing 1,000 shares at 934.5p.

• John Parcell, chairman of domain name registration business Group NBT, has sold a significant part of his stake in the company. He disposed of one million shares at 308p to leave him with 575,877 shares.

• Jim Marsh, chief executive of Cable & Wireless Worldwide, has increased his stake following its demerger from Cable & Wireless Communications last week. He bought 246,500 shares at around 92p each and now owns 651,559 shares.

• Paul Polman, chief executive at Unilever, has bought 19,000 shares at 1,898.9p each, investing more than 360,000. He now owns 54,448 shares.

• George David, a non-executive director at oil giant BP, has bought the equivalent of 120,000 shares to significantly increase his stake. He paid 568.9p each and now holds 159,000 shares.

• Terry Duddy, a non-executive director at shopping centre group Hammerson, has bought his first holding in the company with 20,000 shares at 394p.