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The TB annual awards

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The TB annual awards

It was a year, surely, for keeping your head down and muddling through. For being level headed and grateful for your blessings.

Not all business people got the memo, preferring instead to make dramatic moves that seemed rather out of keeping with the wider context.

They at least win an award and a valuable prize.*

1)    “Frying pan to fire” award – Antonio Horta-Osorio. He left Lloyds Banking Group and promptly walked into Credit Suisse just as it was reeling from the Archegos and Greensill scandals – and then broke Swiss quarantine rules.

2)    “Busted flush” award – Elliott Advisors. Are any UK boards still genuinely in fear of them?

3)    “Don’t you realise how good I am?” award – Tim Steiner, Ocado. The shares are presently the worst performer in the FTSE-100 so far this year. Talking to the press is still below his dignity though, somehow.

4)    A close second in the same category is Matt Moulding of The Hut Group. The shares are down 60%, but it is all somebody else’s fault.

5)    “Flogging a dead horse” award – Peter Cowgill of JD Sports deserves some kind of recognition for his persistence in fighting the CMA’s admittedly odd insistence that he unwind his acquisition of Footlocker.

6)    The Ronseal award for doing exactly what it said on the tin must go to Bulb chief exec Hayden Wood who became an adviser to the government on the back of launching an energy company that promised to “disrupt” the UK market. He did – by going bust and leaving solvent members of the industry to bail out his customers. 

*free subscription to TB

Press release of the day

Will 2022 be the year that a four-day week takes off?

This from Atom bank reports on its own experience, having introduced the measure two months ago.

It claims to have “seen no evidence of any negative impact on customer service or operations”.

It has been a “huge success” says chief people officer Anne-Marie Lister.


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