Scottish Business Briefing – Friday 2 November, 2012

RBS: Pre-tax loss of �1.26bn. Picture: PA
RBS: Pre-tax loss of �1.26bn. Picture: PA
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WELCOME to’s Scottish Business Briefing. Every morning we bring you a comprehensive round-up of all news affecting business in Scotland today.


Arran and Skye breweries unveil merger plans

TWO of Scotland’s best-known micro-breweries are to join forces as part of plans to create a £15 million business and capture a larger share of the international beer market. Details will be unveiled today of the all-share merger between Isle of Arran and Isle of Skye breweries, along with plans to raise £10m to fund the expansion strategy, which includes building a larger brewery on Arran, a bottling plant on the mainland and a chain of pubs. (Scotsman)

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RBS raises PPI claims bill by a further £400m

Royal Bank of Scotland has set aside a further £400m to cover the cost of claims for mis-sold payment protection insurance (PPI). It takes the bank’s total charges for PPI mis-selling to £1.7bn. The figures were disclosed as RBS reported a pre-tax loss of £1.26bn for the three months to 30 September, against a £2bn profit a year earlier. (BBC)

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Letts profits halved as diary maker admits tough trading will continue

LETTS Filofax, the Dalkeith-based diary maker that has been in talks with potential buyers, saw profits halved during the 12 months to January amid the third consecutive year of “very tough trading” for the business. (Scotsman)

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Comet’s demise threatens 700 jobs in Scottish stores

About 700 jobs in Scotland are under threat after electricals retailer Comet said it will call in the administrators next week, marking one of the high street’s largest failures in recent years. The 240-strong chain, which has 35 branches north of the Border, was bought for a nominal £2 in February by turnaround specialist OpCapita, which also received £50 million from previous owner Kesa. (Scotsman)

Sparkling Ortak slips into the red

JEWELLERY firm Ortak has slipped into the red in another example of the difficult trading conditions on the high street. The Orkney business recorded a £77,336 loss in the 12 months to January 31, 2012, compared with a profit of £111,452 the previous year. The loss came in spite of a slight rise in turnover from £7.27 million to £7.3m. (Herald)

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Private equity firm sells stake in IndigoVision

SCOTTISH Equity Partners, which backed IndigoVision founder Oliver Vellacott’s unsuccessful attempt to engineer a management buyout of the technology company, has sold its entire stake in the video security systems specialist. (Herald)

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