Tuesday newspaper round-up: Bell Pottinger, North Sea, Sports Direct, spending

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Tuesday newspaper round-up: Bell Pottinger, North Sea, Sports Direct, spending

Tue, 05 September 2017
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Tuesday newspaper round-up: Bell Pottinger, North Sea, Sports Direct, spending

(ShareCast News) - Bell Pottinger, one of the City's leading public relations agencies, has been expelled from the industry's trade association after an investigation found its secret campaign to stir up racial tensions in South Africa to be the worst breach of ethics in its history. The Public Relations and Communications Association said Bell Pottinger was unethical and unprofessional, had brought the industry into disrepute and has banned the firm from its membership for at least five years. - Guardian

A London property developer is to allow its tenants to pay their deposits in bitcoin- the first time the virtual currency has been used in the UK residential homes market. Co-living pioneer The Collective has announced that prospective tenants can pay deposits from Monday in bitcoin. By the end of this year it will also accept rent payments in the cryptocurrency. This is the first time in the UK a major property developer has enabled bitcoin payments. The Collective said it was in response to demand predominantly from international customers. - Guardian

The pub group founded by a former Merrill Lynch investment banker has suffered widening losses after getting hit by costs linked to a refinancing. Hawthorn Leisure, which owns 230 pubs, saw pre-tax losses hit £8.9m in 2016 from £5.8m the prior year largely because of what it described as exceptional costs linked to the refinancing of its debt. - Telegraph

A spate of fresh North Sea oil and gas projects starting up this year will reach a ten year high within the ageing basin. A boom in new projects has already unlocked an extra 140,000 barrels of oil and gas a day so far this year, and analysis from oil specialists at Wood Mackenzie suggests the 2017 total will reach 230,000 new barrels of oil and gas a day. - Telegraph

The institution thought to be the biggest independent shareholder in Sports Direct International has joined the revolt against its chairman,The Times has learnt. Fidelity International, which owns almost 6 per cent of the sports and leisurewear retailer, is planning to vote against the re-appointment of Keith Hellawell at the annual meeting tomorrow. Fidelity also plans to vote against the re-election of Simon Bentley, the senior independent director seen as a potential replacement for Mr Hellawell. - The Times

Consumer spending appears to have remained muted last month as rising prices in the shops and sluggish wage growth dampened demand on the high street. Barclaycard said that spending had grown at 2.9 per cent in August compared with a year earlier, below the average rate for this year so far of 3.8 per cent. - The Times