Business features

A job? I can't even get an internship

By Candice Krieger, February 10, 2011

Graduates have been faced with unrelenting gloomy news of late with unemployment doubling to its highest level for more than a decade.

One in five who graduated in the past year is unable to find work within six months. Britain's jobless now totals 2.5 million - a 7.9 per cent unemployment rate, rising to 20.3 per cent among those aged 16 to 24 - with many now questioning the value of a degree in light of rising tuition fees.


Watch out Ikea - Tiger's on the prowl

By Candice Krieger, February 3, 2011

It is hardly surprising that Philip Bier's Tiger UK value retail chain is being compared to Ikea. Founded in Scandinavia ten years ago, Tiger calls itself is a "variety store" selling home furnishings. It is active in eight countries, including the UK where there are ambitions to open 40 stores by 2012 - and eventually one on every high street.


Doing business in Israel? Drop the stiff upper lip

By Candice Krieger, January 20, 2011

Avi Levi
Avi Levi, General Manager UK of Bank Hapoalim International. He moved to the UK from Israel in 2007

● I have had to adjust to doing business in the UK - be more formal and reserved.

In Israel, if clients have something to say, they say it, whereas Brits are more subtle.

In the UK, there are lots more meetings before concluding transactions, whereas in Israel, you can conclude everything in one meeting.

There is an emphasis on execution. Israelis are always looking for the bottom line. The UK could learn from this and be a bit more direct.


How I muscled in on millions

By Candice Krieger, January 13, 2011

Zef Eisenberg is completely open about it. His multi-million pound deal with the billion-pound pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline, selling them his Maximuscle sports-nutrition brand, came "completely out of the blue".

Maximuscle, which the former bodybuilder launched in 1995, is the nation's largest supplier of sports nutritional products. It is on target to achieve £80m worth of sales for the 2010/2011 financial year, up from £69m last year.


A London home? Yes, please - although I don't really need it

By Candice Krieger, December 2, 2010

Foreign buyers go to Italy to buy leather goods, to France to buy designer clothes and to London to buy a property. This is according to veteran estate agent Trevor Abrahmsohn, the founder and managing director of Glentree Estates in north London.

Renowned as the billionaires' agent, the South African is famous for selling expensive, or "trophy" homes, to overseas investors. Around 40 per cent of his clients are from abroad.


A kick in the teeth for businesses

November 25, 2010

While the internet has made it faster for us to shop, it has also given rise to a major concern - the counterfeiting of successful brands. And the problem, which is costing businesses more than £3bn a year, is showing no signs of fading.

The Trading Standards Institute has reported a marked increase in copycat websites selling fake goods over the past year. These bogus sites copy the style of official branded versions, tricking customers into thinking they are buying genuine products by using an almost identical design and similar web address.


How I got Simon Cowell to give me a 'yes'

By Candice Krieger, November 18, 2010

Clive Rich is a useful person to have on side.

He has successfully closed deals for some of the nation's most high-profile names including Robbie Williams, Simply Red, Tesco and Virgin. And then there are the 15 years he spent working with Simon Cowell, the multi-millionaire music entrepreneur.

Mr Rich, who works in partnership with leading law firm Olswang, also runs Rich Futures, where he spends half of his time on business negotiation - he is credited as being one of the UK's leading practitioners in this field.


Meet the Ronson property star (and it's not Gerald)

By Candice Krieger, November 11, 2010

When Gerald Ronson, the property heavyweight and boss of Heron International, welcomed his daughter Lisa into the business, he said they would "give it a go for a year". Twelve years on and she is still there. And Ms Ronson, a former Asian equities saleswoman, seems to have no intention of leaving. There is after all, a lot of work to be done.


The gas chief with a whole lot of energy

By Simon Griver, November 4, 2010

The news that Israel's Delek Group, controlled by Israeli billionaire Yitzhak Tshuva, is reportedly considering raising around £200 million on the London Stock Exchange in January will focus attention on one of Israel's largest corporations. Delek's holdings include a global property portfolio, hundreds of petrol stations in the US, Europe and Israel, and the Phoenix Israel Assurance company, but it will be Delek's achievements in discovering vast gas reserves off Israel's shores that whets the investor's appetite.


Here's an idea: Get cash for it

By Candice Krieger, October 28, 2010

Serial Entrepreneur Serge Bueno is passionate about start ups. He has after all helped set up around 80. So passionate is Mr Bueno, 51, that he has delayed retirement to launch a million-pound online Dragons' Den-style initiative as a way for like-minded entrepreneurs to find each other - and investment.