Royal Bank of Scotland is to raise a further half a billion pound by offloading a further holding in its listed insurance division, Direct Line. The bank announced late last night that it would be selling a 15.3 per cent stake in the insurer, leaving it with a 49.9 per cent interest. The Independent.
A deal by Tesco to buy the Giraffe restaurant chain is “imminent”. The paper says that the purchase, thought to be worth up to £50m is a “bold gambit aimed at revitalising the supermarket operator’s British business”. The Times
Two senior employees were sacked at hibu, previously known as Yell Group, amid speculation that they were plotting a buyout of the firm’s struggling US businesses, writes The Times. According to the paper, citing an staff memo, the Yellow Pages publisher dismissed the President and Chief Publishing Officer of Yellowbook due to “disloyal” conduct.
First Quantum Minerals, the UK-listed Canadian miner, is set to take control of sector peer Inmet after revising the terms of its hostile takeover, according to the Financial Times. The paper writes that First Quantum has now received backing for its offer from over 61% of Inmet’s shareholders. The offer is worth C$5.1bn and will create one of the world’s largest copper miners.
The Serious Fraud Office may have to pull an investigation into Autonomy, bought by Hewlett-Packard for £7.0bn in 2011, due to a conflict of interest, according to The Guardian. The agency, which is looking into alleged accounting irregularities at the British software group, has a contract worth £4.0m to use Autonomy’s software, the paper said.
The National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR) estimates that the UK economy contracted by 0.1% in the three months to February. If this decline continues in the three months to the end of March, the UK will officially be in a triple-dip recession following the 0.3% contraction in the fourth quarter of 2012. The Telegraph