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Chase Bank Limits Cash Withdrawals, Bans International... Before you read this report, remember to sign up to for 100% free stock alerts Chase Bank has moved to limit cash withdrawals while banning business customers from sending...

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Richemont chairman Johann Rupert to take 'grey gap... Billionaire 62-year-old to take 12 months off from Cartier and Montblanc luxury goods groupRichemont's chairman and founder Johann Rupert is to take a year off from September, leaving management of the...

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Cambodia: aftermath of fatal shoe factory collapse... Workers clear rubble following the collapse of a shoe factory in Kampong Speu, Cambodia, on Thursday

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Spate of recent shock departures by 50-something CEOs While the rising financial rewards of running a modern multinational have been well publicised, executive recruiters say the pressures of the job have also been ratcheted upOn approaching his 60th birthday...

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UK Uncut loses legal challenge over Goldman Sachs tax... While judge agreed the deal was 'not a glorious episode in the history of the Revenue', he ruled it was not unlawfulCampaign group UK Uncut Legal Action has lost its high court challenge over the legality...

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Diageo boss Paul Walsh to step down

Category : Business

Chief executive stepping down after 13 years, making way for Ivan Menezes

The boss of Diageo, Paul Walsh, is stepping down after 13 years at the helm of the company behind Smirnoff and Guinness. He will make way for company-veteran Ivan Menezes, who has been chief operating officer of the drinks group since March last year.

Walsh, 57, will step down from the board at the annual meeting in September and will stay on until June next year to help ease the transition, drawing a full executive salary.

Last year, Walsh received a £1.2m salary, as part of a total pay package worth £11.2m. Diageo chairman Lord Davies said that his remuneration was “appropriate” given the strong performance of the business. Walsh has complained about anti-business sentiment in the UK, claiming that top executives are “constantly bludgeoned” for their high pay.

He has also cashed in shares worth £12.7m since last September, though he retains a substantial personal holding in the drinks group of 770,000 shares worth £15.4m.

Walsh has been chief executive of Diageo, which also owns Baileys and Johnnie Walker, since September 2000. The company’s share price has more than tripled in that time, aided by acquisitions including Turkey’s Mey Içki and the recent agreement to buy a stake in India’s biggest liquor maker, United Spirits.

Faced with sluggish demand in recession-hit European economies, Diageo has been buying up brands in emerging markets, where it aims to make around half of its turnover by 2015.

Walsh said on Tuesday: “Diageo is one of the world’s leading businesses, a position it has earned through the efforts of every one of its talented people, who are passionate about our brands, our contribution to society and our performance. The pivotal role which Ivan has played in building this position for the business demonstrates that he is the right person to lead Diageo on the next stage of its journey.”

Menezes originally hails from India, and headed up Diageo’s key North America division for eight years before his appointment as chief operating officer last year.

Martin Deboo of Investec said: “It’s not a total surprise, that’s the first thing to say. This has been a well-flagged transition.” He added that Menezes had been the lead candidate to take over. “It was very much his to lose,” he said. The City was unmoved by the news and the shares inched up 0.25% in early trade.

A Diageo spokeswoman said Walsh had not yet decided what his next move would be. He holds a number of corporate non-executive roles, as well as working as a business ambassador for the government’s business department.

His is the second high-profile departure from the FTSE 100 in a week, after Peter Voser stepped down as chief executive of oil group Shell.

Jamie Dimon is under fire

Category : Business, Stocks

Shareholders are pushing JPMorgan’s board to strip Jamie Dimon of his role as chairman. An influential shareholder advisory firm also wants three board members out.

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Health minister threatened with ejection from royal college

Category : Business

Earl Howe’s position on advisory committee under threat as doctors claim he ‘mis-sold’ health reforms

A health minister is facing the humiliation of being ousted from a prestigious role within the Royal College of Physicians over claims that he falsely reassured doctors who feared the coalition would privatise of the NHS.

Earl Howe’s position on an advisory committee is being reviewed following a complaint. Six influential members of the professional body that represents doctors wrote to its president, Sir Richard Thompson, claiming that the minister was “not a fit person to fulfil this important role”. Thompson has launched an investigation by the College’s trustees into Howe’s probity.

The senior doctors claim that Howe, a former banker, falsely advised them that reforms under the health and social care bill would not force doctors to use market mechanisms to choose where patients will be treated.

According to the doctors, the regulations will mean that clinical commissioning groups – the bodies to be set up by GPs to organise patients’ care – will have to put services out to tender if there is more than one provider capable of offering particular treatments. This means NHS hospitals and services will have to compete with private health firms for business.

Andy Burnham, the shadow health secretary, said there had been a breakdown in trust between health professionals and government, adding: “This whole issue has become a crisis of trust for the department of health. There would be a straight forward breach of trust given that statements ministers have given have not been honoured.

“The medical profession feels the government has mis-sold its NHS reforms. It was sold on the principle that doctors would be in control but in fact it will be the market that will decide.”

A spokeswoman confirmed that Thompson, and “in the interest of probity”, had “referred the issue to the board of trustees and would report back in June”.

She said the Friends of the RCP, the committee on which Howe serves, is an informal advisory group, including past presidents and officers, and figures from finance, industry, and other charities, that plays no role in the governance or management of the RCP but offers advice in areas such as effective fundraising.

The coalition denies the regulations will force doctors to put services out to tender, believing it will give GPs the ability to select a variety of providers and will improve standards.

Miranda Richardson: ‘I hate our sneering attitude to success’

Category : Business

Miranda Richardson is one of Britain’s leading actors, and this year is chair of judges for the Women’s prize for fiction. On one thing she is clear: leave Hilary Mantel alone, she’s brilliant

Miranda Richardson was fully primed for a fight. Ahead of the recent meeting to decide the shortlist for the Women’s prize for fiction – previously the Orange prize – the actor, chair of this year’s judges, had her fists balled tight in defence of Hilary Mantel and her novel Bring Up the Bodies. Over the past six months, as Mantel racked up her second win in the Booker prize and her first in the Costa, before adding the David Cohen award – sometimes known as the “British Nobel” – to her haul last month, Richardson noticed a growing disdain for the writer’s success, a swirling bitterness. “I so despised the backchat that I heard in relation to Bring Up the Bodies,” she says, wrinkling her nose. “I picked up a very negative vibe, and it was very distasteful to me.”

There have been increasing murmurs that Mantel doesn’t need another prize, that less well-known writers could use the veneration instead. This undercurrent bubbled up ferociously in February, when an excellent, perceptive speech Mantel had given on society’s treatment of royalty was selectively quoted in the tabloids, her comments about the Duchess of Cambridge described as vicious and venomous. (These articles conveniently ignored the essay’s conclusion, which called for everyone “to back off and not be brutes” to Kate.) The hullabaloo was used by some as an excuse to kick Mantel in the most personal terms, to bring up her weight and infertility; an attempt, said the author later, to

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James Crosby to give up knighthood and 30% of pension

Category : Business

Request by discredited former HBOS chief comes after MPs’ report slammed his management of bank

• James Crosby’s statement in full

Sir James Crosby, the former boss of HBOS, has asked for his knighthood to be revoked after a scathing report by MPs found that he sowed the “seeds of destruction” at one of Britain’s biggest banks.

Crosby was chief executive of HBOS until 2006, but was described as the architect of a strategy that just two years later led to the bank having to be rescued by Lloyds and eventually bailed out with £20bn of taxpayers’ money.

He said he was “deeply sorry” for his role in HBOS’s failure and asked for his knighthood to be removed. He is believed to be the first person to have voluntarily offered to hand back a knighthood. The 57-year-old chose to give up the honour, granted in 2006, rather than face the prospect of being stripped of it – as Fred Goodwin, the former boss of RBS was last year.

Crosby also offered to hand back 30% of his £580,000-a-year pension. He will still collect £406,000 annually in pension payments – 80 times as much as the average private sector worker. On Tuesday he also quit his £125,000-a-year role on the board of catering company Compass.

Attention is now likely to turn to his successor at HBOS, Andy Hornby, and the chairman, crossbench peer Lord Stevenson, who were also blamed in the damning report.

Liberal Democrat peer Lord Oakeshott said: “James Crosby has done the right thing. Clearly it’s not sustainable for Andy Hornby not to follow.”

Crosby’s decision came hours after David Cameron refused to intervene when MPs from all three main political parties called for action.

The former banker, who is sitting on a pension pot worth more than £20m, said he had “never sought to dissociate” himself from HBOS’s near-failure and its bailout by taxpayers.

“Shortly after I left HBOS, I received the enormous honour of a knighthood in recognition of my own – and many other people’s –contribution to the creation of a company which was then widely regarded as a great success,” he said.

“In view of what has happened subsequently to HBOS, I believe that it is right that I should now ask the appropriate authorities to take the necessary steps for its removal.”

The Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards report, published on Friday, had described him as the “architect of the strategy that set the course for disaster”.

The MPs blamed Crosby for putting in place “a culture of perilously high–risk lending” with a lack of controls that “may have given rise to an accident waiting to happen”.

Crosby said the report, which described his misjudgments as “toxic”, made for “very chastening reading”.

The honours forfeiture committee, chaired by the head of the civil service Sir Bob Kerslake, will meet to discuss Crosby’s request for his knighthood to be revoked. A spokesman for the Cabinet Office said although it is believed to be the first time anyone has asked to have their knighthood revoked, Crosby’s request does not preclude the committee formally stripping him of the title if it is told to consider doing so – as happened with

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Metaswitch Networks Announces the Appointment of Former Light Reading Editor-in-Chief Phil Harvey as Its New Director of Corporate Communications

Category : Stocks

12-Year Veteran of Light Reading Endorses Metaswitch’s ‘Software Telco’ Strategy in New Role

Read more here: Metaswitch Networks Announces the Appointment of Former Light Reading Editor-in-Chief Phil Harvey as Its New Director of Corporate Communications

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Metaswitch Networks Announces the Appointment of Former Light Reading Editor-in-Chief Phil Harvey as Its New Director of Corporate Communications

Category : Stocks

12-Year Veteran of Light Reading Endorses Metaswitch’s ‘Software Telco’ Strategy in New Role

See the article here: Metaswitch Networks Announces the Appointment of Former Light Reading Editor-in-Chief Phil Harvey as Its New Director of Corporate Communications

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Draper to step down from LTA role

Category : Business

Roger Draper to step down from Lawn Tennis Association chief executive role at the end of September.

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Despatch Industries Promotes Ellen Cheng to General Manager of China and Taiwan Region

Category : World News

MINNEAPOLIS, MN–(Marketwire – Feb 26, 2013) – Despatch Industries, the world’s leading thermal technology and equipment provider, is pleased to announce that the company has promoted Dr. Ellen Cheng to the role of General Manager, China and Taiwan. In her expanded role, Dr. Cheng is now responsible for Despatch’s sales, service, technology, and business development activity in China and Taiwan for the company’s Solar, Carbon Fiber and Thermal Technology business units. Ellen is focusing on growing Despatch’s regional footprint and presence in the electronics, aerospace and carbon fiber markets, along with extending leadership in the solar industry as the company transitions its solar manufacturing to China in early 2014.

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FSA responds to MPs’ Libor report

Category : World News

The Financial Services Authority defends itself against criticism from a committee of MPs over its role in the Libor rate-rigging scandal.

Link: FSA responds to MPs’ Libor report

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