Scottish Business Briefing - Thursday 24 January, 2013

First Minister Alex Salmond
First Minister Alex Salmond
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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.


Scottish exports ‘rocket’ by £1.6 billion

SCOTLAND’S worldwide exports have “rocketed”, Alex Salmond said yesterday as figures showed a £1.6 billion rise in the value of goods sold overseas. The First Minister was visiting an Edinburgh-based firm which provides components for fast-growing space industry, including US space agency NASA (Scotsman).

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Marchant to step down from SSE after a decade at the controls

IAN Marchant, the head of SSE, is to leave the energy giant after more than ten years overseeing significant growth. Since becoming chief executive of the Perth-based utility in 2002, the company’s market capitalisation has grown from some £5.8 billion to £13.7bn (Scotsman).

Acquisition spurs latest recruitment drive at CSL

Subsea engineering specialist CSL plans to take on a further 60 people this year after acquiring fellow Aberdeen firm Project Excellence. CSL said all 25 people at the project and risk-management business would transfer across to the larger company, taking its total workforce to nearly 150 (P&J).

Enquest expands North Sea focus with Alba stake

NORTH Sea-focused Enquest is to continue its expansion in the area after agreeing to buy a stake in a heavy oil field for up to £19.25 million. The company is acquiring an 8% interest in the producing Alba field, 130 miles north-east of Aberdeen, from Japan’s Cieco Energy. The deal will add around six million barrels to its reserve base (Herald).

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Barr eyes 7% rise in full-year revenues to £253m

Soft drinks group AG Barr, which is expected to complete its £1.4 billion merger with Britvic next month, today said its full-year revenues are on track to grow about 7 per cent to £253 million, despite “very poor weather” during the summer (Scotsman).

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Flybe boss blames ‘brutal’ air tax burden for plans to slash 300 jobs

FLYBE chief executive Jim French ­has announced the first jobs cull in the firm’s 30-year history in a sweeping attempt to steer the airline back to profit. French blamed the “brutal impact” of rising taxes on air travel for the move, which will see 10 per cent of a 3,000-strong UK workforce laid off in a bid to save £35 million and get back into the black next year (Scotsman).

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