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Daily News Roundup: Tuesday 28th November 2017

Posted: 28th November 2017


CYBG agrees Mastercard deal

CYBG has agreed a deal to work exclusively with Mastercard, extending its partnership with the credit card payments company. The owner of Yorkshire Bank and Clydesdale Bank will switch its Visa credit cards to Mastercard as part of the partnership. The seven-year agreement will put all of the bank's debit, credit and commercial cards on the Mastercard network.

Regulator apologises for ‘Basel IV’ bank rules delay

Singapore central bank boss Ravi Menon, who sits on the on the supervisory body of the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision, has apologised for the delay in the introduction of new ‘Basel IV’ rules.


Huge sustainability fund launched in London

Partners including the Nobel Sustainability Trust, founded by members of the Nobel family, and Set3, the investment group founded by Gordon Power and Hargreaves Lansdown co-founder Stephen Lansdown, have launched the Nobel Sustainability Growth Fund in London. The socially and environmentally focused fund will make private equity investments in the UK to build technology, manufacturing, services and asset development businesses which make a positive social or environmental impact.

AnaCap likely to ditch UK as a top tier investment destination

AnaCap has said it could drop the UK as a top tier investment destination, blaming the falling value of the pound, pressure on consumer spending and European workers leaving the UK as factors behind its decision.


SocGen to close 15% of branches as it cuts costs

Société Générale is planning on cutting 900 jobs and closing 15% of its branch network in France by 2020. SocGen currently employs 23,000 people in its retail network.

EIB pares sterling debt sales as Brexit fears bite

Figures show that for the first three quarters of 2017, the European Investment Bank raised just £2.95bn of sterling bonds, down from £5bn during the same period in the previous year.

Julius Baer chief quits for Pictet

Boris Collardi, CEO of Julius Baer, has resigned and taken over the top role at rival Pictet. Julius Baer announced that Bernhard Hodler, its chief risk officer, would take over temporarily.


BA owner 'secures Monarch's Gatwick slots'

British Airways owner IAG has secured take-off and landing slots at London's Gatwick airport that used to belong to Monarch, according to reports. EasyJet, Wizz and Norwegian had also been keen to acquire the slots.


Bitcoin hits record high

Bitcoin hit a record high of $9,721 yesterday, a gain of nearly 19% for the week, before easing back to $9,534 in late afternoon. Thomas Glucksmann, head of marketing at Gatecoin, a digital currency exchange, said that a price of $10,000 was a “psychological stratosphere” that would “push more institutional investors into the mix”. Shane Chanel, an analyst at ASR Wealth Advisers, forecast that “greed” would drive bitcoin's price to $12,000 within six months.

Robertson drafted in to mediate LSE row

Former HSBC deputy chairman Sir Simon Robertson has been brought in to mediate secret talks in the hope of pacifying the boardroom row at LSE. Sir Simon met the activist fund manager Sir Christopher Hohn, who is demanding ousted LSE chief exec Xavier Rolet is reinstated. However, the talks have not managed to break the deadlock.

Worldpay lowers expectations

Worldpay has blamed continuing slowing British consumer demand and weaker US economic conditions for agreeing to be taken over by US rival Vantiv. The fintech firm expects net revenue growth for 2017 to be at the lower end of its 9-11% guidance range.

UK consumer lending start-up raises £300m to make new loans

Lendable has raised £300m for new loans following a commitment from Castle Trust, a specialty lender backed by JC Flowers, to purchase the start-up’s loans over three years.


Pharma deals are 'vote of confidence', says government

The government has championed two deals to invest in the UK's biotech industry as confidence in its industrial strategy. MSD, known as Merck in North America, will support a new research centre in London creating around 950 new posts, while Germany's Qiagen will expand its investment in a genomics and diagnostics campus in Manchester.


Gym chain secures funding

Sweat!, a chain of five low-cost gyms, has secured funding to double in size over the next 12 months. Puma Investments has made an equity investment of £3.75m and has an option to put in a further £2.5m at the end of the period.


Time Magazine sold in Koch-backed deal

US magazine publisher Time is set to be bought by rival media company Meredith Corporation for $2.8bn (£2.1bn), in a deal backed by the billionaire brothers Charles and David Koch. In the UK, Time's titles include Wallpaper, the NME, Horse & Hound, World Soccer, Uncut, Women's Own, Ideal Home, Anglers' Mail and others.

Pearson shares dip after teaching unit sale

Education group Pearson has sold its language teaching unit Wall Street English for $300m (£225m). The firm said the sale was part of its focus on “a smaller number of bigger opportunities in global education”.

SpringerNature planning listing

SpringerNature, the publisher of science magazines Nature and Scientific American, has asked JP Morgan and Morgan Stanley to organise a potential €4-5bn stock market listing next year, according to reports.


Online the winner in Black Friday sales frenzy

New figures show £1.4bn was spent on online sales in the UK on Black Friday - up some 11.7% on last year. However, footfall was down on high streets, shopping centres and retail parks by 3.6%. Meanwhile, according to online data specialist PCA Predict, UK online sales were up 3% between 11am and 5pm this Cyber Monday compared to last year. It said the peak minute for purchasing goods was towards the end of the working day at 4:38pm.

Neo backs Beckham for success

Neo Investment Partners, which specialises in luxury brands, has invested £30m in Victoria Beckham Limited in order to facilitate expansion of its digital and physical retail presence. Other businesses in Neo's portfolio include menswear brand Ami Paris, eyewear designer Alain Mikli and bakery chain Paul.


Industrial strategy gets tepid welcome

Business groups have suggested the government’s new industrial strategy will have little impact unless it is supported by concrete policies and serious funding. The CIPD said “the level of investment and ambition… particularly relating to skills and how they are used in the workplace, is inadequate given the scale of the productivity challenge facing the UK”. The Institute of Directors called the white paper a “big first step” but added there are “many miles left” to go to turn it into a sustainable strategy. Carolyn Fairbairn, director general of the CBI, welcomed the message behind the strategy but agreed that it is only a start.

BoE must work harder to reverse distrust of economics

Andy Haldane, chief economist at the Bank of England, has said that the central bank must work harder to improve the public’s understanding of economics after seeing trust in the organisation fall following the financial crisis. Mr Haldane said economics was currently facing a “twin deficit” in which the British public failed to understand and trust economics. He said efforts to improve understanding of economic policy would help people make better decisions while ensuring there is a “trusting and understanding” relationship between the public and the BoE.

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