Scottish Business Briefing – July 22nd 2013

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The founder of Optical Express has pumped more capital into the business. Picture: PA

FINANCE

266,000 UK jobs for unregulated financial services

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MORE than a quarter of a million jobs could be created if the British financial services industry broke free from the dead hand of over-regulation, a report out today forecasts. Accountancy giant PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) said its latest study showed that the pivotal position of financial services in the wider economy could potentially create 265,500 private sector jobs – about 7,300 of them in Scotland. ( Scotsman)

FOOD, DRINK & AGRICULTURE

Beer we go with new bottles

The Cairngorm Brewery Company at Aviemore is selling more of its beer overseas after getting its new bottling facility up and running. Managing director Sam Faircliff said that the brewer was exporting to Denmark, Finland, Norway, Italy, Switzerland, Hong Kong and Australia. The extra business is expected to help the company, which has the equivalent of 21 full-time employees, grow turnover to £1.6million this year after notching up sales of £1.4million in 2012. (P&J)

MANAGEMENT

Founder saves Optical Express from collapse

OPTICAL Express has been saved from the fate of a flurry of collapsed retailers by an eleventh-hour cash injection from its Scottish chairman and founder. David Moulsdale, the son of a Glasgow taxi driver, mounted the rescue after Royal Bank of Scotland refused a request for more loans. His move is seen as safeguarding 1,600 Optical Express jobs in the UK and Ireland. ( Scotsman)

MEDIA, TECHNOLOGY & LEISURE

US tie translates into big opportunity for Lingo24

Web translation company Lingo24 has signed a deal with a company in New York which will extend its use by global brands and boost its US fund-raising efforts. The Edinburgh-based firm has established a partnership with US-based translation management company Smartling in which each will use the other’s technology. ( Scotsman)

Fusion strikes with £100,000 conversion

EVENTS and venues operator Fusion Group has unveiled plans for its latest investment, just days after opening a property in Dunblane. The Grangemouth-based group plans to pump £100,000 into its Logierait Lodges development near Pitlochry by turning a former post office building into a “bar and grill”. Alex Mckie, managing director at Fusion, said: “There’s a gap in the market for pub-based experiences, as opposed to restaurant experiences. ( Scotsman)

UK has more digital firms than thought, NIESR reports

Britain has many more technology firms than the government estimates, according to a new report. Under its classification the government recognises 187,600 digital companies. Research by the National Institute for Economic and Social Research (NIESR) says there are almost 270,000 such companies in the UK, 40% more than the government estimate. (BBC)