PRESS DIGEST - British business - July 12

Mon Jul 12, 2010 3:30am GMT
 

The Times

NEW BREED OF BANKER LINING UP TO TAKE OVER THE HIGH STREET

Single branch building society Kent Reliance is being lined up for acquisition by U.S. private equity firm JC Flowers in order to gain a banking licence in the UK and build up assets to become a big lender. If successful, the Flowers vehicle could increase its presence by buying up available branches, brands and accounts of Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS.L: Quote), Northern Rock (NRKx.L: Quote) and Lloyds Banking Group (LLOY.L: Quote).

FACTORIES CALL FOR RETHINK ON RENEWABLE ENERGY TARGETS

Manufacturers in the UK, represented by the Engineering Employers Federation, have suggested the government's targets for the expansion of renewable energy are too ambitious and could result in "customers paying over the odds to achieve a reduction in emissions". The government is pushing for an increase to the previous Labour administration's commitment of a sevenfold expansion of renewable energy by 2020. "The projected costs of meeting the target are significant and highly uncertain, anywhere between 4.4 billion pounds and 24.9 billion pounds on top of existing subsidies a year by 2020," says Roger Salomone, the EEF's energy and regulation adviser.

NEED TO KNOW: EASYJET

Carolyn McCall, the newly-appointed chief executive of easyJet (EZJ.L: Quote), has said the low-cost airline will be reviewing its business model and will be aiming to update investors when it releases full-year results in November. The focus of the review is likely to be on the pace of growth at the airline and how this impacts on easyJet's fleet requirements.

NEED TO KNOW: BAE SYSTEMS

On Monday, defence group BAE Systems (BAES.L: Quote) will officially unveil its first ever high-tech roboplane. The trial aircraft, dubbed Taranis, cost 143 million pounds to construct and spearheads BAE's drive to convince the Ministry of Defence to invest in the next generation of unmanned aircraft. Test flights for the Taranis plane will commence in 2011.   Continued...

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