Sunday News Roundup
The Sunday Times
Hollywood is teaming up with record labels to save the specialist retailer HMV — and keep Amazon and iTunes at bay. The world’s biggest music labels and film studios are assembling a multimillion-pound rescue package to prevent HMV from going out of business.
The founder of the White Company earned almost £6m from the home furnishings and fashion chain last year. Chrissie Rucker was handed the cash after the business doubled its profits. The £5.75m award puts her among the country’s top-paid businesswomen.
Camelot has set aside £5m to pay bonuses to bosses at the national lottery operator. The payments come in the same year that it delivered record ticket sales and secured a three-year extension to its licence to run the lottery.
As the internet changed the way we shop, HMV stopped listening to its customers. Now the music retailer has paid the price. “If people really wanted high streets and market towns to stay the same they would still shop there, but today’s consumer wants convenience,” said David McCorquodale, head of retail at KPMG.
Amid Mayfair’s swanky clubs, is there room for one for the in-betweeners? “We’ll be the first nightclub to open with triple Michelin-starred chefs,” noted Mark Alexiou, one half of the duo behind Rocking Horse, which will make its debut this spring in one of the capital’s swankiest districts.
The Mail on Sunday
It’s not your ordinary chief executive role. Model maker Games Workshop is seeking a new boss who ‘understands’ its ‘niche business model’. In headhunter speak, this means the lucky individual must have some kind of affinity to its cult-like fantasy war games featuring goblins and dwarfs.
Ivestors in Imperial Tobacco have raised questions over planned changes to its executive compensation structure. Discussions over the proposals – which could allow the board to change the amount directors, including chief executive Alison Cooper, get in share options and awards without recourse to investors – are understood to be continuing.
Luxury chocolate retailer Hotel Chocolat has delivered a much-needed boost to the high street by achieving record sales and profits.The company, which grows its own cocoa beans in St Lucia and Ghana, posted sales up 6pc at £63.8m and an 84pc increase in pre-tax profits to £5.4m. Angus Thirlwell, chief executive, said it was a "coming of age" year for the company.
The Sunday Telegraph understands that Mr Easterbrook, the new chief executive of Wagamma, who took over at the pan-Asian chain last August, is keen to explore the possibility of increasing its footprint in North America.
Deloitte was appointed administrator to HMV last week in a brutal week for the high street that also saw the DVD rental group Blockbuster collapse.
DVD rental firm Blockbuster is to close 129 stores and make 760 members of staff redundant after going into administration.Thirty-one of the chain's 528 stores have already been put on notice of closure with a number of closing-down promotions announced. The firm employs 4,190 staff.
In the wake of the contaminated meat scandal, two people dressed in a pantomine horse costume are kicked out of a branch of Tesco for a prank in the supermarket's burger aisle. Mobile phone footage shows the pair entering a frozen food aisle in a branch of the supermarket shouting "where's my mum?".
High Street Blues: The slow death of retail Britain. The Future of the High Street report was commissioned in 2011 as pressure mounted on the Government to address the issue, but nearly two years on, the future of the high street seems bleaker than ever. One in nine high street shops now stand empty as competition from online retailers remains fierce and consumer spending continues to be hampered by the poor economic climate.
Women's penchant for colourful, more costly gems is changing the market, writes Laura Chesters Jeweller Bec Astley Clarke says: "Women are now buying their own fine jewellery and not just relying on gifts from men. The old fashion advert of a diamond nestling in a cleavage is not what women want.
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