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: : Mar/Apr 2003

Body Shop begins turnaround. Cosmetics chain Body Shop has shown signs of recovery following a major overhaul of the business. .... [more] 30 Apr, 2003
Big Mac puts the brakes on UK. Burger giant McDonald's is to open fewer outlets in the UK, citing a slowdown in sales. .... [more] 29 Apr, 2003
Talking shop with Philip Green. As part of the small business week, Virginia Eastman catches up with one of the UK's most succesful entrepreneurs, Philip Green. .... [more] 29 Apr, 2003
Prime City Centre Spot For O'Briens 10th Glasgow City Outlet. O'Briens Irish Sandwich Bars launches its tenth store in Glasgow tomorrow, when husband and wife team, Iain and Karen McKee, mark their first venture into franchising and retailing and open their new outlet at 87 Renfield Street. .... [more] 23 Apr, 2003
Confidence in UK small businesses up. Confidence among the owners of small businesses in the UK has rallied during the past few months after reaching a record low last year, research suggests. .... [more] 21 Apr, 2003
Pizza Hut plans 75 new outlets in UK. Pizza Hut says it will create more than 3,500 jobs in the UK this year in an expansion drive, which will boost its headcount by almost a quarter. .... [more] 18 Apr, 2003
Laura Ashley slashes price of rights issue. Laura Ashley, the struggling fashion and home furnishings retailer, has slashed the price of a rights issue that it hopes will help it turn the corner after a dismal start to 2003. .... [more] 17 Apr, 2003
INTEREST - Euro speculation soars as D-day nears. Speculation about Britain's euro decision has hit fever pitch as the war in Iraq fades, with some reports ruling out a referendum on joining the single currency for years and others predicting a vote in 2004. .... [more] 16 Apr, 2003
Pizza Express fails to win more custom. UK restaurant chain Pizza Express, which is the subject of two takeover bids, has said its sales are still falling. .... [more] 16 Apr, 2003
Poor clothing sales stall recovery at Marks & Spencer. The recovery of Marks & Spencer suffered a setback yesterday when it revealed weaker-than-expected sales with the performance in children's clothing particularly poor. .... [more] 9 Apr, 2003
Staff rewarded with Spanish break. A furniture company chairman is thanking his staff for bumper profits by giving more than 100 workers a free holiday. .... [more] 8 Apr, 2003
Pop coup for Body Shop's Roddick. Body Shop founder Anita Roddick has signed up pop singer Annie Lennox to write a chapter for the first book she intends to produce, but has learned that the 2,000 Body Shop outlets worldwide will not stock her titles. .... [more] 6 Apr, 2003
Slowdown puts the brakes on M&S. High Street retailer Marks & Spencer will this week reveal a sharp slowdown in sales growth, ending more than a year of spectacular increases. .... [more] 6 Apr, 2003
Jobs on way as Domino's takes bigger slice of pizza market. Pizza delivery chain Domino's said yesterday it would create up to 1,500 jobs in the UK and Ireland in the next year. .... [more] 4 Apr, 2003
Johnson may add new topping to 278m PizzaExpress offer. The battle to win control of PizzaExpress intensified yesterday after the pizza chain agreed to a new 277.8m takeover from GondolaExpress - whose backer owns a stake in the Nando's chicken restaurant chain. .... [more] 4 Apr, 2003
Pizza bidder forced to backtrack. PizzaExpress bidder Venice was today ordered by the Takeover Panel to retract comments made by entrepreneur Luke Johnson yesterday, claiming that the restaurant chain's profits would be much lower than City forecasts. .... [more] 2 Apr, 2003
Rivals clash in bidding war for PizzaExpress. Bidders for PizzaExpress were embroiled yesterday in a sparring match with Venice Bidder, the buyout vehicle led by restaurant entrepreneur Luke Johnson, telling GondolaExpress to make an offer for the company or leave the table. .... [more] 2 Apr, 2003

'Misleading' KFC advert banned by watchdog. An advert for Kentucky Fried Chicken has been banned for making its meals look bigger and better than the real thing. .... [more] 31 Mar, 2003
Profit from the answers to your dream future. Franchise operators seem to have a simple approach when it comes to recruiting - "Don't bother what sort of work we're doing, just roll your sleeves up and get down to it." .... [more] 31 Mar, 2003
McDonald's may sell Pret stake. Burger chain McDonald's, struggling to get its menu of businesses right, may dump its minority stake in sandwich chain Pret A Manger and turn its back on the strategy of global diversification which was to be its saviour. .... [more] 28 Mar, 2003
M&S confirms dispute with Galeries Lafayette. Marks & Spencer has said French retailer Galeries Lafayette is trying to claim compensation because of a dispute relating to stores it bought from M&S in 2001. .... [more] 26 Mar, 2003
Brambles tackling problems at CHEP Europe. Brambles Industries PLC said it is tackling its problems at CHEP Europe, as outlined last week, with a restructuring which is expected to cost 85 million. .... [more] 25 Mar, 2003
M&S recovery wearing thin. High Street stores group Marks & Spencer is facing its toughest trading since the chain's recovery began 18 months ago. .... [more] 25 Mar, 2003
Green cleared to move on Safeway. Retail entrepreneur Philip Green was yesterday handed a surprise advantage in the 3bn bid battle for Safeway when the Government cleared his indicative offer for the supermarket group but referred the other four bidders to the Competition Commission. .... [more] 20 Mar, 2003
Gondola punts for Pizza Express. Independent directors at PizzaExpress have opened talks with two private equity groups bent on wrecking an agreed offer from Venice Bidder, a buyout vehicle led by the pizza chain's former boss, Luke Johnson. .... [more] 18 Mar, 2003
Hamleys directors toy with buyout offer. Hamleys, the resurgent toy store group, will become the latest retailer to flirt with delisting after it confirms today that its directors are mulling a management buyout. .... [more] 17 Mar, 2003
U-turn as M&S buys 80% abroad. Marks & Spencer, the High Street giant that once traded on its famous Buy British policy, is now importing 80% of its fashions from abroad. .... [more] 16 Mar, 2003
Laura Ashley savaged after second alert this year. Laura Ashley, the struggling fashion and home furnishings retailer, was last night preparing to change the terms of a 9m rights issue after its second profits warning in less than two months. .... [more] 14 Mar, 2003
Franchise frenzy. Business Europe takes a look at a growing industry that has an annual turnover of 9.3 billion in the UK alone. .... [more] 13 Mar, 2003
PizzaExpress investors demand chairman's head for backing offer. Shareholders in PizzaExpress moved to mount a revolt yesterday over a recommended 263m offer for the company, calling for the group's chairman, Nigel Colne, to stand down and for the board to requisition an extraordinary meeting. .... [more] 13 Mar, 2003
Laura Ashley warns of loss. The fashion and home furnishing store, Laura Ashley, has warned that it will report a loss this financial year. .... [more] 13 Mar, 2003
PizzaExpress management may quit if Johnson bid wins. The top 20 managers at PizzaExpress have threatened to resign if Luke Johnson, the former chairman, wins support for his agreed 263m takeover bid of the struggling restaurant group. .... [more] 12 Mar, 2003
M&S to join the credit card war. Marks & Spencer is poised to launch a nationwide credit card scheme that will make it one of the biggest issuers in Britain and double its profits from financial services within four years. .... [more] 9 Mar, 2003
Mothercare to tighten supply chain. Struggling retailer Mothercare is close to striking a deal ending the chaos in its distribution system that has triggered a string of profits warnings. .... [more] 9 Mar, 2003
Six Continents 'faces second bid'. Marriott International is considering joining the battle to take over Six Continents, the world's biggest hotel group, a report has said. .... [more] 7 Mar, 2003
Fast Retailing to shut most UK Uniqlo shops. Poor sales have forced Japan's Fast Retailing to close most of its casual wear Uniqlo stores in Britain against a backdrop of fading popularity at home. .... [more] 7 Mar, 2003
Green's gaffe could backfire. It is yet to be seen whether retail entrepreneur Phillip Green's less-than-grovelling apology to the Irish will save his business from the pasting Gerald Ratner's received after he boasted that he had become rich by selling 'crap'. .... [more] 6 Mar, 2003
Safeway suitors ignore warning. The dirty tricks campaign surrounding the fierce bid battle for supermarket group Safeway escalated this weekend despite an extraordinary intervention by the Takeover Panel. .... [more] 2 Mar, 2003
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