Business briefs: Condies | Cupid | Stagecoach

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Condies, the business advisory and accountancy firm, has bolstered its headcount with the appointment of a VAT strategist.

Lynn Gemmell is joining the practice from Edinburgh-based peer Chiene & Tait, where she was director of VAT services.

Condies, which was founded in the 1920s and has offices in Edinburgh and Dunfermline, said Gemmell was also a regular writer of technical papers and a conference speaker. Managing partner George Primrose said: “She is one of the most experienced VAT practitioners in Scotland and will be a great asset to our firm and clients.”

Cupid investors approve buy–back

Investors in Edinburgh-based internet dating company Cupid have approved its plans to buy back up to 10 per cent of its issued share capital.

With a market value of more than £150 million, the buy-back could be worth about £15m. The shares will be bought for cancellation between 7 January and 4 March – the day before its full-year results are expected.

Shares in Cupid, headed by chief executive Bill Dobbie, were floated at 60p on the Alternative Investment Market in June 2010 and the group said the move to reduce its issued share capital is aimed at enhancing returns for investors.

£3.9m Stagecoach bus purchase

Stagecoach, the Perth-based transport operator, has begun taking delivery of more than 30 buses to go into service at its recently acquired Wigan bus operations.

The £3.9 million fleet of new vehicles was manufactured by Falkirk-based bus-maker Alexander Dennis.

Stagecoach Manchester managing director Christopher Bowles said: “We are committed to improving services for our passengers in Wigan and this is the first step towards that. We look forward to attracting even more people on to our greener, smarter bus services.”