Scottish Business Briefing - Thursday 19 September, 2013

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.

Standard Life is muscling in on the sort of real estate lending that burnt the Scottish banks. Picture: Phil Wilkinson
Standard Life is muscling in on the sort of real estate lending that burnt the Scottish banks. Picture: Phil Wilkinson

MEDIA, TECH & LEISURE

BT Scots boss accuses firms of being too ‘parochial’

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ONE of Scotland’s senior business figures will tomorrow warn that the nation’s economic growth is being held back by “parochial rivalries”. BT Scotland director Brendan Dick will tell the Falkirk Council Business Panel Conference that regional communities have been too focused on outperforming neighbours and, as a result, are failing to seize much larger global opportunities (Scotsman).

FINANCE

Standard Life moves into property lending

STANDARD Life is muscling in on the sort of real estate lending that burnt the Scottish banks during the financial crisis, as it said that the recent Government sale of a stake in Lloyds Banking Group showed there was not a black hole remaining in property loans. The Edinburgh pensions and investment giant has handed £250 million to its funds arm Standard Life Investments (SLI) to invest in property loans in the UK (Herald).

FOOD, DRINK & AGRICULTURE

Ex-Diageo boss is new Whyte & Mackay chief

FORMER Diageo boss Bryan Donaghey last night emerged as the new chief executive of rival Whyte & Mackay – just weeks after leaving Scotland’s biggest whisky distiller. Donaghey replaces John Beard, whose departure from the Glasgow-based Scotch producer was confirmed last month (Scotsman).

(http://www.u2swisshome.com/business/food-drink-agriculture|Read all today’s food, drink and agriculture news from scotsman.com|Click here}

RETAIL

Behar Carpets struggles as losses widen

Behar Carpets, the Glasgow business founded in 1920, saw its losses widen substantially in its last financial year amid depressed consumer spending. Accounts just filed at Companies House show a deterioration of over £513,000 in the profit and loss account in the year to June 30 2012, and also reveal that the business was sold to new owners out of administration a year ago Herald|Herald})

TRANSPORT & INDUSTRY

High Speed Rail ‘would boost central belt’

Trains that can go from Glasgow to Edinburgh in under 30 minutes and on to London in two hours could boost the central belt as a world leading “mega region”, according to the Transport Minister. Keith Brown has called on the UK Government to accelerate work to bring high speed rail to Scotland, and is developing a business case for a fast line between Scotland’s two biggest cities (Scotsman).

Alexander Dennis workers go on strike over pay

Six hundred workers have gone on strike at the Alexander Dennis bus factory in Falkirk - the first of two stoppages. The Unite union has rejected a 3.5% pay offer - saying it was below expectations at a time when profits and executive pay were rising rapidly. The company said the offer was more than fair and has urged staff to call off the strikes (BBC).