PEOPLE: The business diary

Ailsa Stott and her lacrosse internationalists seek business community help
Ailsa Stott and her lacrosse internationalists seek business community help
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FIRST Minister Alex Salmond may have been hoping he’d seen the last of Donald Trump, but Scottish Tourism Alliance (STA) chairman Stephen Leckie is confident the outspoken American billionaire will be back.

Immaculately attired in his trademark “retro” tweed suit, Leckie told the STA’s annual networking event at the Scottish Parliament that Trump was “obviously intending to stay”.

His evidence? Apparently “The Donald” has joined the alliance, despite recently withdrawing a planning application to expand his Aberdeenshire golf resort after his attempt to block a nearby offshore wind farm failed.

Mutch sharpens focus

EDINBURGH entrepreneur Martin Mutch, who established and recently sold IT business Rocela to Irish company Version 1, has been turning his attentions to creativity of a different kind.

Not only is he planning to write a novel, the former winner of the EY technology entrepreneur of the year award has been drawn into planning and launching Retina – an international photography festival based in the city.

“Photography is a personal passion and Scotland has many creative artists but lacks a platform to showcase their talents and to bring in the best of global inspiration,” said Mutch, who was joined at an event at the Caledonian last week by model Anna Freemantle.

Freemantle, a mother of two, is also the founder and director of the Edinburgh International Fashion Festival and models for many fashion houses. Mutch believes Retina will be the largest travel and lifestyle photography festival in the world.

Lacrosse ladies’ goal

A FUNDING plea has reached us from an outfit that doesn’t normally grace the business pages – Scotland’s senior ladies lacrosse team.

Captain Ailsa Stott is keen to bring a more corporate image to a sport that conjures up an Enid Blyton representation of “jolly hockey stick” schoolgirls running around in the mud.

She tells us that the team, which came a highly respectable sixth in last year’s world cup event, is involved in a constant battle to secure funding. It comes despite Lacrosse Scotland recently entering a sponsorship agreement with Rathbones – aimed more at grassroots and junior level competition.

Stott believes there is a wider battle among women’s sport to attract investment, but we reckon there must be some fans from within Edinburgh’s financial community willing to lend their name, and cash, to the ladies.

Let the MPC run free …

A RIPPLE of merriment at Whitehall last week as the Treasury select committee was quizzing the Bank of England governor, Mark Carney, on various topics from Scottish independence to interest rate policy.

There was some initial consternation when the bank’s director of markets, Paul Fisher, revealed to MPs that there is no formal transcription of the rate-setting debates of the monetary policy committee (MPC).

Fisher said initial efforts to make such full transcriptions were unsuccessful, and also hinted that such a record might inhibit the “free-flowing discussions” of MPC members.

“What, were people throwing things around?” asked Treasury select committee chairman Andrew Tyrie, evoking a pleasingly alternative take on the dismal science.

Partners for Change100

Standard Life has partnered with the charity Leonard Cheshire Disability for the launch of Change100, an internship scheme for disabled university students. It is the first company headquartered in Scotland to support the initiative.

Sandy Begbie, group operations officer at Standard Life, said the company is committed to employing a diverse workforce and creating opportunities for those who may be finding it difficult to gain a foothold in the workplace.

Leonard Cheshire Disability is partnering with Vanilla, a social enterprise also responsible for the non-profit sector graduate scheme Charityworks.