WELCOME to scotsman.com’s Scottish Business Briefing. Every morning we bring you a comprehensive round-up of all news affecting business in Scotland today.
HUNDREDS of thousands of small businesses are risking hefty fines or financial collapse because they have no insurance, research yesterday warned. Insurance firm LV said that more 350,000 small businesses have no employers’ liability insurance and risk being fined £2,500 a day. By law, all businesses employing staff must have employers’ liability insurance otherwise they can be fined by the Health & Safety Executive (HSE).
PLANS for a multimillion-pound development have been revealed for Stonehaven. The proposals feature a supermarket, petrol station, primary school, space for community facilities, playing fields and a business park. Deeside-based Bancon Developments and the Dunnottar Trust have submitted a notice to Aberdeenshire Council letting the authority know they will be putting forward an application for land that is allocated for development in the authority’s local plan.
FOOD, DRINK & AGRICULTURE
AG BARR chief executive Roger White yesterday brushed off City speculation over moves to break up rival Britvic, maintaining that the maker of Irn-Bru “doesn’t have to do a deal”. Profits at the Cumbernauld-based firm took a £4.9 million hit after its proposed reverse takeover of Pepsi-bottler Britvic collapsed in July due to delays caused by a Competition Commission probe.
A new report today claims the high street is already transforming from a pure shopping destination to a centre for “leisure and services” as the dramatic rise of the internet changes the retail landscape. PriceWaterhouseCoopers, which commissioned the report, said there were more 3-star hotels, convenience stores and coffee shops on the high street than at the start of the year. There are also more bookmakers and cheque cashing centres.
TRANSPORT & INDUSTRY
A prominent supplier of heavy equipment for construction work is on course to set a fresh sales record this year amid signs the recovery in the key housebuilding market is gaining momentum in Scotland. Scot JCB expects to grow sales from the record £91 million set last year following a big increase in activity among housebuilders.
MEDIA, TECH & LEISURE
Dating website operator Cupid today insisted that the future for the industry “remains positive”, despite seeing its profits more than halve during the first half of the year. The Edinburgh-based firm posted an underlying pre-tax profit of £2.6 million for the six months to 30 June, down from £5.9m a year earlier, although revenues grew 12.4 per cent to £43.4m.
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