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Record business Insider: Business IN BRIEF.

Byline: Alasdair Northrop

DIY chain B&Q yesterday axed about 400 jobs.

Hit by a sales slump, the firm revealed 220 posts would go from the 1400-strong workforce at their Southampton HQ.

Another 80 jobs were cut from regional operations and owners Kingfisher said 100 vacancies would not be filled.

But no staff at B&Q's 339 UK stores will be made redundant.

The cuts follow a review by chief executive Ian Cheshire, who took over in June.

He said: 'We need to streamline the business to focus on supporting stores.'

TYCOON Tom Hunter has been named the richest Scot in the licensed trade.

Ayrshire-born Hunter, who has a fortune of pounds 700million, made his first venture into the trade last year by buying 220 pubs from the Spirit Group.

Other Scots on the annual Publican Rich List include Caledonian Heritable chief Kevin Doyle at number 49 (pounds 24million) and club boss Stefan King at 56 (pounds 18million).

Scotland's national business magazine www.insider.co.uk

The Office of Fair Trading may launch a second investigation into card fees charged by MasterCard and the major banks.

They ruled a previous collective deal among them breached competition law.

PACKAGING and labelling group MacFarlane are now out of the red and working with a trading profit of pounds 2.6million.

Chairman Archie Hunter said the turnaround, from a trading loss of pounds 2.4million, was thanks to chief executive Peter Atkinson's leadership.

Hunter revealed there was a strong improvement in international business for the group - who were founded by Lord MacFarlane - with total sales growing from pounds 61.6million to pounds 63.9million.

Investors are also now getting a special interim dividend of 75p.

JOHN MENZIES yesterday reported a 10 per cent rise in half-year profits to pounds 15.1million.

The results were boosted by their air baggage and cargo-handling sector, who saw a seven per cent rise in sales and 15 per cent rise in profits.But their Edinburgh firm's newspaper and magazine distribution division saw both figures slip by one per cent.

Shareholders will receive a 5.5 per cent rise in dividends.

A DEAL which put bus maker Alexander Dennis back into Scottish ownership has won a top award.

Stagecoach chief executive Brian Souter and Rangers chairman David Murray were part of a consortium that took over the company when they were in administration.

Last night, it received the Deal of the Year accolade at Scottish Business Insider's Deals & Dealmakers awards.

Dealmaker of the year was David Leslie, of leading accountancy firm PricewaterhouseCoopers.
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Title Annotation:Business
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Sep 7, 2005
Words:424
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