Page 1

FTSE 100

STEVEN MANNING In the holiday spirit!

- 101.35 5567.96

Full inter view - Page 3

SIMON KAYE Across the pond Column - Page 4

An EXAMINER publication

KIRKLEES BUSINESS NEWS The business NEWSpaper for Kirklees

Apprentices help to spread the load A COMPANY providing loading bay systems for depots and warehouses is signing the praises of apprentices. Kirkburton-based Easilift Loading Systems has taken on four apprentices to support its growth – having achieved turnover of about £2m this year. Callum Daw, 17, of Lowerhouses; Luke Manning, 16, from South Crosland; Mohamed Ramzan, 18, from Birkby; and Joshua Burgess, 16, of Manchester are studying electrical courses. For the first year of their training, they will be based entirely in the classroom. Callum, Mohammed and Joshua are studying NVQ Level 3 at Kirkdale Industrial Training Services in Brighouse, while Luke is attending Leeds College of Building while he studies for an electrical engineering diploma. Easilift managing director Rob Fay said: “Apprentices are all the rage again – and not only because of Lord Sugar’s annual televised search for new business talent. “The Government has made an increase in apprenticeships a central

plank of its policy – from the creation of an extra 100,000 apprenticeships to its partnerships with leading British manufacturers such as Rolls-Royce to establish an apprentice academy. “The reasons for nurturing apprentices are obvious. It’s a cost-effective means of growing a business, bringing on talented youngsters without having to pay graduate prices. “It’s a positive gesture towards your community and the nation as a whole, showing that you’re willing to give somebody a start and a defined career path – a laudable goal, especially in these recessionary times. “Put those things together, and you’re helping to cement a loyal workforce who has been instilled with your values and keen to help the business progress.” Mr Fay said: “Having come through a four-year apprenticeship at the start of my own career, I fully appreciate the value of what an apprenticeship can offer to young people. “I also hope that my own career path provides some inspiration for our apprentices and demonstrates to them that a long term career path with

Bluefin Insurance Services which has offices at Cleckheaton, said instances of bullying had doubled in the last decade – due in part to the recession which has created growing pressure to meet targets resulting in strained relationships between managers and staff. Bluefin’s Peter Castle said stressful

Getting creative A NEW online portal has been launched to promote Huddersfield’s Creative and Media Studio School to local businesses. Get Creative in Kirklees – – was created following a series of “co-creation” consultation sessions with students at the Rawthorpe-based Studio School, who will run the site day-to-day.

● Full story - Page 5

■ STARTING YOUNG: Managing director Rob Fay (left) and operations project manager David Ward (right) with apprentices (from left) Callum Daw, Luke Manning, Mohamed Ramzan and Joshua Burgess

promotion opportunities can be a reality.” Taking on apprentices is also a form of succession planning, said Mr Fay. “Long-term success in business demands fresh insight and innovation, especially in the hyper-competitive world we live in, with growing pressure

from China and other rapidly developing countries,” he said. “Yet, according to one recent report, Britain is heading the other way. The demographics of industry in general are becoming top heavy, with more people aged over 40 than there are under the age of 40.”

Stressed-out bosses ‘bullying their workers’ WORKPLACE bullying is on the increase as company managers come under growing pressure to meet their targets, it is claimed. And changes to employment law proposed by Business Secretary Vince Cable could provide cover for office bullies to operate more freely, it is feared.


working conditions were no excuse for “iron-fist” management – warning that heavy-handed management could result in companies being taken to an employment tribunal. “Employers need to be aware that they could be liable for acts of harassment committed by individual staff members and required to pay com-

pensation to a victim,” he said. Business Secretary Vince Cable is considering reform of employment law, which could include “protected conversations” – allowing bosses to have frank talks with staff about under-performance without fearing that the conversation could later be used in evidence at a tribunal.

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Worth winning A DEVELOPER in Huddersfield has won an award for excellence. Worth Homes was national winner of the Premier Guarantee Excellence Awards 2011 for its Scotgate Fold development in Honley.

● Full story - Page 6

Solicitors for business inYorkshire Huddersfield | Wakefield | Halifax | Leeds



Bosses blamed for breakdown of RBS

ROYALl Bank of Scotland was brought to its knees by “multiple poor decisions” and its £50bn “gamble” on buying Dutch bank ABN Amro, said a damning report. A long-awaited Financial Services Authority report blamed deficiencies in the management and culture at RBS prior to its £45.5bn rescue and called for tougher rules to make bankers more accountable for their actions. The regulator admitted it had failed to adequately monitor and challenge the bank, although it largely blamed the previous government for encouraging it to take a hands-off approach. And the deal that effectively broke the bank – the takeover of ABN Amro – was carried out with inadequate research, the report added. It said: “The decision to make a bid of this scale on the basis of limited due

diligence entailed a degree of risk-taking that can reasonably be criticised as a gamble.” Business Secretary Vince Cable said he was seeking legal advice about whether any of the directors should face disqualification proceedings in the wake of the report’s findings. The report shone a light on the poor relations between the FSA and RBS and said chief executive Sir Fred Goodwin’s “assertive and robust” management style was flagged as a potential risk as early as 2003. He aggressively expanded the bank over his eight-year tenure, culminating in the disastrous acquisition of ABN Amro in 2007. RBS management had been resistant to what they saw as unnecessary FSA interference leading to a clear-the-air meeting with Sir Fred in October, 2004.

The FSA admitted its approach was flawed and failed to challenge the management of RBS. It did not put enough resources into managing big banks and was too focused on policing traders. But it said this reflected the mood of light-touch regulation extolled by New Labour, with Chancellor Gordon Brown anxious for the FSA not to damage the City’s competitiveness. The report reflected badly on shadow chancellor Ed Balls who in a speech in 2006 said “nothing should be done to put at risk a light-touch, risk-based regulatory regime”. The FSA confirmed it would not be taking any action against the bosses who presided over RBS’s epic failure, but its chairman Adair Turner called for a public debate for a change in the rules to make bankers more accountable.

■ VERDICT: The FSA has tabled a hard-hitting report

New twist on car rental industry

Airlines in takeover battle

TWO of the UK’s best-known entrepreneurs have unveiled a new venture to allow motorists to rent out their car when they do not need it. The car club venture has been set up by easyJet founder Sir Stelios Haji-Ioannou and founder Brent Hoberman. It will be launched next year under the easyCar brand and will allow people to use smartphone apps to book slots in their neighbours’ vehicles. This will give them a cheaper alternative to traditional car rental and help people with cars to make cash from hiring them out. The car club aims to test the first 1,000 cars this spring in the London

SIR Richard Branson’s Virgin Atlantic is keeping up the pressure on rival BA in the battle for ownership of Lufthansa-owned BMI. International Airlines Group, parent company of British Airways and Iberia, reached a deal to buy BMI last month, but Virgin has remained in the race by signing a “terms of agreement” contract with Lufthansa. This means that Virgin will be able to start due diligence and analyse BMI’s books to find out what the acquisition would involve. In the battle over BMI’s coveted take-off and landing slots at Heathrow, Virgin is hoping to stop BA’s

area. Sir Stelios said the new scheme “could prove to be the future of car rental and ownership in cities of the future”. He said: “Rather than having to buy the cars to be rented and pay the ownership costs, this business model relies on the fact that there are plenty of under-used cars on the road already and that is lazy capital that can be put to work again.” The firm claimed its new business model is also greener than traditional car hire – saying that car sharing could get 10 cars off the road for each vehicle contributed to a club.

owner gaining more dominance and having an even greater presence on the runways of the busy hub. If the BA deal goes ahead it would mean that IAG owns more than half of Heathrow’s landing slots. Although reports say the offer made by Virgin of about £50m is half that of the IAG offer, Sir Richard’s airline is hoping that the regulatory scrutiny that would accompany a BA-BMI merger will make it more attractive to Lufthansa. Virgin’s bankers are understood to argue that a cheaper deal with Virgin would benefit Lufthansa as the sale would be completed more quickly.

Page 2 Region is optimistic YORKSHIRE employers are more optimistic about hiring than their counterparts across the Pennines, said a survey today. The latest quarterly Employment Outlook from recruitment firm Manpower showed that employer sentiment in the region for the first quarter of 2012 remained positive at plus 4% – in stark contrast to the minus 5% for the North-west. While optimism among Yorkshire firms is not as positive as it was before the recession, the region has not recorded a negative figure for more than two years – whereas the North-west is in negative territory for the third consecutive quarter.

Eurozone worries BANKING stocks took another hammering yesterday as fresh signs that the eurozone’s finances are in peril eroded optimism following last week’s summit. Worries about Italy’s ability to enforce tough austerity measures and news that the European Central Bank has been reducing its spend on Government bonds to prop up ailing economies, contributed to the FTSE 100 Index closing 101.3 points lower at 5427.8 – a drop of 1.8%.

SHARE PRICES NORTH AMERICAN American Express £30.61 -0.68 Gannett 838.89 -16.35 Hess Corp £35.94 -1.55 Microsoft 1630.98 -16.67 Motors Liquidation 48.08 Wal-Mart Stores £37.32 -0.07 AEROSPACE & DEFENCE Avon Rbbr 296 -1 BAE Systems 2751/4 -45/8 Rolls-Royce 719 -61/2 AIM Brady Plc 77 Dawson Intl 13/8 Man Brnze 32 -11/4 AUTOMOBILES & PARTS GKN 1783/4 -75/8 BANKS Barclays 1811/2 -83/4 HSBC 4883/4 -161/8 3 Lloyds Banking Gp 24 /8 -21/4 Ryl Scotland 201/2 -13/8 Stan Chart 14191/2 -39 BEVERAGES Diageo 1374 +14 SABMiller £213/4 CHEMICALS Croda 1761 -39 Elementis 98 1331/8 -13/4 Johnsn Mat 1813 -63 CONSTRUCTION & MATERIALS Balfour Beatty 2445/8 -71/4 Costain 1961/4 -61/4 ELECTRICITY

Drax Gp 5461/2 -4 Intl Power 3243/8 -7/8 SSE 1260 +5 ELECTRONIC & ELECTRICAL EQUIPMENT Laird 145 +1/2 EQUITY INVESTMENT INSTRUMENTS Alliance Trust 335 -53/8 FIXED LINE TELECOM SERVICES BT Grp 1895/8 -33/4 Cable & Wireless 373/8 -3/8 Comm 1 Cable & Wireless 17 /4 -1/8 Wwide 1 Colt Group 92 /4 -23/8 KCOM 691/2 -11/4 Talktalk Telecom 1357/8 -3/4 FOOD & DRUG RETAILERS Morrison W 3141/8 -21/2 Sainsbury 2923/4 -41/2 Tesco 3911/2 -71/2 FOOD PRODUCERS AB Food 1085 Tate Lyle 6751/2 -10 Unilever £211/8 -1/8 GAS, WATER & MULTIUTILITIES Centrica 2851/8 -13/4 National Grid 6041/2 -1 1 Pennon Grp 676 /2 -7 Severn 1473 -5 United Utils 599 -2 GENERAL FINANCIAL 3i Group 1803/8 -31/4 ICAP 3291/2 -121/4 London StockExch 780 -40 Man Group 1301/4 -45/8

Provident Financial 949 -11 Schroders 1302 -62 Schroders NV 1055 -59 GENERAL INDUSTRIALS Cooksn Grp 4701/4 -201/4 REXAM 3423/4 -41/2 Smiths Grp 904 -191/2 GENERAL RETAILERS Ashley L 19 Carphone Whse 311 -4 Dixons Retail 103/4 -1/8 3 Home Retail 87 /8 -13/8 Inchcape 293 -121/4 Kingfisher 2481/8 -71/4 M&S 3121/4 -3 Mothercare 168 +73/8 Next £26 WH Smith 505 -12 HEALTH CARE EQUIPMENT & SERVICES Smith Nph 5861/2 -21/2 HOUSEHOLD GOODS Aga Rangemaster 691/2 +1/2 Barrat Dev 923/4 -4 Persimmon 469 -123/4 Reckitt Benckiser £32 -3/8 Taylor Wimpey 361/8 -7/8 INDUSTRIAL ENGINEERING Charter 9311/2 -31/2 IMI 7241/2 -61/2 INDUSTRIAL METALS Ferrexpo 2663/4 -21 INDUSTRIAL TRANSPORTATION BBA Aviation 1757/8 -15/8 LIFE INSURANCE

Aviva Lgl & Gen Old Mutual Prudential Resolution Standard Life

301 1023/4 1131/2 624 2471/2 1965/8 MEDIA BSkyB 7281/2 D Mail Tst 3913/4 ITV 615/8 Johnston Press 5 Pearson 1128 Reed Elsevier 510 STV Group 851/2 Trinity Mirror 51 Utd Business 4693/4 UTV 1001/2 WPP 650 Yell Group 51/4 MINING Anglo American £231/2 Antofagasta 1156 BHP Billiton 1897 Eurasian Natural 6341/2 Res Fresnillo 1654 Kazakhmys 880 Lonmin 975 Rio Tinto £311/4 VEDANTA 1065 RESOURCES Xstrata 9553/8 MOBILE TELECOM SERVICES Inmarsat 4007/8 Vodafone Group 1731/8 NONLIFE INSURANCE Admiral Grp 8241/2

-201/4 -33/4 -33/4 -301/2 -55/8 -71/4 -5 -101/2 -3 +1/4 -16 -111/2

Local shares Carclo Marshalls National Grid Weir Gp

310 871/2 6041/2 1893

-1/2 -1 -72

FTSE closed at



-1 /2 -181/4 +1/2 -151/2 -1/4 -1 -72 -64 -501/2 -115 -63 -47 -11/4 -47 -561/8 -221/2 -1 -30

Down 101.35 RSA Insurance Gp 1027/8 -31/8 OIL & GAS PRODUCERS BG 13241/2 -24 BP 4441/2 -71/2 5 Cairn Energy 274 /8 -23/8 Royal Dutch Shell A £225/8 -3/8 1 Royal Dutch Shell B £23 /4 -1/4 Total £321/8 -5/8 Tullow Oil 1328 -42 OIL EQUIPMENT & SERVICES AMEC 8971/2 -131/2 Petrofac 1373 -41 Wood Gp(J) 633 -16 PERSONAL GOODS Burberry Gp 1217 -46 PHARMACEUTICALS & BIOTECHNOLOGY Astrazeneca £291/4 -3/8 GlaxoSmithK XD 41/2

£21 -1/4 REAL ESTATE Brit Land 4563/8 -121/8 Captl Shop Cent 3053/4 -101/2 1 Hamrsn 359 /4 -113/4 Land Secs 629 -22 SEGRO 208 -71/4 SOFTWARE ETC SERVICES Invensys 1983/4 -33/4 Logica 731/2 -31/2 Misys 2341/2 -91/4 3 Sage Group 284 /4 -13/4 SUPPORT SERVICES Berendsen 412 -21/2 Bunzl 840 -3 Capita 618 -8 De La Rue 868 -1 -33/8 Electrocomp 1921/4 Experian 809 -7 G4S 2491/2 -13/4 Hays 621/4 -11/8 Homeserve 2941/2 -65/8 Menzies J 524 +7 3 Rentokil 61 /8 -21/4 Smiths News 801/4 -2 Wolseley 1915 -51 IT HARDWARE ARM Hldgs 565 -5 Psion 50 -2 Spirent Comms 1121/2 -73/8 TOBACCO Br Am Tob £30 Imperial Tobacco £235/8 +1/8 LEISURE & HOTELS Bwin.Party Digital 1313/4 -73/4 Shire

Carnival Compass Grp easyJet Enterprise Inns FirstGroup Go-Ahead Gp Greene King Intercontl Htls Intl Cons Airlines Gp Ladbrokes Mitchells & Butlers Natl Express Rank Org Stagecoach Group TUI Travel Whitbread

£213/4 584 376 363/4 3203/8 1232 4651/2 1105 1463/4

-1/8 -31/2 -3 -13/4 +11/4 -3 -23/8 -12 -61/2

125 2223/4 2131/4 147 2541/4 1521/4 1576

-35/8 -21/2 -33/8 -37/8 -3/4 -41/4 -23

FTSE 100

INDEX 5427.86


FTSE 250

INDEX 9901.15


TOURIST RATES Tourists going abroad can expect the following rates for sterling: Australia...................... 1.45 dollars Bangladesh................. 112.97 taka Brazil.............................. 2.50 reals Canada....................... 1.52 dollars China ............................. 8.84 yuan Czech Republic ...... 27.33 korunas Denmark....................... 8.27 krone Euro............................... 1.12 euro Hong Kong................ 11.48 dollars Hungary................... 318.35 forints India.......................... 72.09 rupees Japan........................... 114.89 yen Mexico ....................... 18.90 pesos New Zealand .............. 1.88 dollars Norway ......................... 8.58 krone Pakistan.................. 130.50 rupees Philippines ................. 58.08 pesos South Africa.................. 11.90 rand South Korea.............. 1554.00 won Sri Lanka ................ 167.12 rupees Sweden....................... 10.09 krona Switzerland.................. 1.38 francs Taiwan ...................... 41.04 dollars Turkey....................... 2.73 new lira USA ............................ 1.48 dollars



Page 3 Steven Manning

Broker who joined jet set!

Role: Managing director of Waterfront Insurance Brokers and business adviser for Sellers Travel Age: 48 Family: Married to Kirstie with children Luke, 17, James, 13, Hollie, 11 and George, five Holidays: Colad’or in Majorca Car: Jaguar XF First job: Lifeguard at Huddersfield sport centre pool Best thing about job: Dealing with people and sorting out their problems Worst thing about job: Until recently, the difficulties getting the right financial facilities in place! Business tip: Always treat people with respect

Waterfront Insurance Brokers/ Sellers Travel Work: Insurance broking/travel Site: Chapel Hill, Huddersfield Employees 14 Phone: 01484 44830 or 511737 Email: info@ Web: www.

IT could have been so different. As a youngster, Steven Manning had trials with Huddersfield Town at the old Leeds Road. However, life as a professional footballer back then wasn’t as glamorous as it is made out to be today – when his first task was to clean the stands following the match that week! At this time he was also working as a lifeguard at Huddersfield Sports Centre. The sports centre was also involved in wrestling, roller skating and other special events such as gymnastics. The management saw fit to put Steven in charge of the roller skating, wrestling and gymnastics. Nadia Comaneci, who won three gold medals at Montreal in 1976 and was the first female gymnast ever to be awarded a perfect score of 10 in an Olympic gymnastic event at the games, visited the sports centre and Steven was given the task of looking after her. This turned out to be more difficult than he anticipated as she wouldn’t come away from the vending machines in the cafeteria until he had bought her a number of chocolate bars – which didn’t please her coaches! At this time, Steven was

sports centre management. Instead, he joined his father at insurance brokers Wilkinson Rodgers, at Greenhead Road in Huddersfield – and embarked on a career which now sees him as managing director of his own business, Waterfront Insurance Brokers as well as business consultant to Sellers Travel. ‘’I have been an insurance broker for 30 years’’ says Steven. ‘’After taking my A-levels at King James School, I worked for my father, Gerald, who was co-owner of Wilkinson Rodgers with Gordon Firth. “I worked three days a week in the office and spent two days at college

■ DEAL MAKER: Steven Manning, who heads Waterfront Insurance Brokers

gaining my BTec national certificate in business studies. ‘’I started as a post boy and progressed to household insurance, motor insurance and commercial insurance. “I became an account executive at 22 and eventually managing director.” In 2006, Steven sold the business on behalf of its shareholders to The Oval Group. He continued to work for the organisation for a further three years before deciding to step out on his own – agreeing with Oval to buy back a number of his clients, who formed the base from which Waterfront Insurance Brokers was to grow. Waterfront’s offices are situated at the bottom of Chapel Hill at International House, which is also the offices of Sellers Travel, one of the oldest established travel businesses in Huddersfield. Steven’s family purchased Sellers Travel in December, 2009, so both companies now operate from the same premises. Sellers Travel was established in 1987 and handles the business travel arrangements for many of Huddersfield’s leading companies as well as many other companies

Sellers Travel also specialises in tailor made holidays and cruises. A recent development was to bring well-known travel industry name, Tony Iredale on board to assist with the travel side of the business. At the end of 2010, Tony was appointed consultant and the company achieved ISO 9001 as well as obtaining exclusive deals with Singapore Airlines and many other airlines and hotel groups. The offices were refurbished and a new computer system installed and in early 2011 two further business travel specialists were appointed who had previously worked with Tony. Sellers Travel is one of the few local travel agents to have the necessary bonding to encompass all types of travel arrangements. They are also members of Advantage one of the largest group of business travel management companies in the UK, with a collective turnover of £500m – making it the 5th largest in the UK. Waterfront Insurance Brokers is also a growing business and Steven believes this is due to the fact that the majority of the firm’s six-strong staff have worked with him previously – some of them for over 20 years.

‘’They all have various qualifications and strengths,’’ says Steven. ‘’We have a wealth of experience – and I will be making another appointment next year.” While Sellers Travel benefits from its links to the Advantage Group, Waterfront Insurance Brokers is part of the Willis network of independent brokers around the country. “ “’Being linked with one of the world’s largest brokers provides us with additional resources.’’ says Steven “It also provides added reassurance to clients that we can handle anything.” Steven has lost none of his enthusiasm for the job. “I like dealing with people and helping them sort out their insurance programmes,’’ he says. “A lot of the time, things are straightforward, but you always come across things that are interesting and things you have never had to consider before.’’ Devoting so much time to setting up the brokerage business and helping the travel firm hasn’t left much time for relaxation – although Steven is a keen Town fan and has a season ticket at the Galpharm Stadium. Any spare time he has is spent with his wife and four children.


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Page 4

High-tech help on debt issues A NEW smartphone application to help people deal with debt problems has been launched by a Huddersfield man. Former debt advisor Sim Ilyas, of Almondbury, has combined counselling with smartphone technology in a new app for the iPhone. The aim is to provide bespoke advice and assistance for thousands of people with financial difficulties. His company, Debtology Ltd, is making the app available through iTunes. It replicates independent face to face debt advice through an easy to use smartphone process. Mr Ilyas said: “I chose to create this app after 10 years of first-hand experience of debt advice and the banking sector. “Debt can be devastating and the negative impact is all the more heartbreaking when you realise that the right advice at the right time can make it so much easier to cope. ‘There will always be more demand for advice than provision. I wanted to create a new way to get free advice to people who need it most.” After completing a degree in law, Mr Ilyas worked as a personal finance specialist for the Royal Bank of Scotland and as a specialist debt adviser for Bristol Debt Advice Centre. More recently he project managed a regional partnership of advice agencies in the South West, delivering free face to face debt advice as part of the Financial Inclusion Fund project.

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Can your business afford to ignore Health & Safety? With Competent Health and Safety advice from just £25 a month you don’t need to Wilby Risk Management offer a range of services including: „ Competent Advice „ Risk Assessments „ Assistance with CHAS applications contact us today on 01422 358525 or email


US committee’s not all that super HE bipartisan US congresT sional super committee – established in August by

President Obama following the debt ceiling debate and mandated to find a minimum of $1,200bn in budget savings over the next 10 years to put the US government on a firmer financial footing – failed last week to reach an agreement. The failure results in automatic triggers to cuts in defence and domestic spending from 2013 (about $600bn each). The failure by the super committee to provide an alternative (and greater) savings plan is based on two factors. Firstly, the Republicans have refused to compromise on their position of permitting tax rises. Given that tighter fiscal policy has two policy options – lower spending or higher taxes – the Republican position appears unworkable. Secondly, there is still a large debate over the role of government in the US. Republicans want minimal government involvement in the economy whereas Democrats argue for more participation, such as through “entitlement programmes” e.g. healthcare that are proving very costly. According to some estimates, US debt to annual income is forecast to rise from the current 66% to 96% by 2021 unless savings are made. One option for savings is to adopt the European model of tough austerity measures today which, although lowering near-term growth, provides for a better long-term growth outlook.

CITY TALK Simon Kaye

Barclays Capital believes that US policymakers should be targeting a total of $6trn in budget savings to secure the US’ AAA credit rating, $4 trillion more than the total of $2 trillion currently under discussion. As a result, the lack of agreement is very disappointing at this early stage of finding cuts, particularly since it is a very small sum of the predicted $38.3 trillion in total US government spending over the next 10 years. In addition, only discretionary spending is currently being reviewed. Social security and medicare (health insurance for the elderly) payments are considered non-discretionary and are forecast to represent $17 trillion of cumulative government spending over the next 10 years – with annual growth rates of nearly 6%. Without entitlement reform, the fiscal profile cannot be stabilised, with the entitlements’ share of GDP rising from 10% to 15% by 2035. What does the lack of willingness by US policymakers to address its rising government debt levels mean for investors? In the main, bond investors (buyers of US debt) should be the most impacted, although the effects could be min-

imal in the near term. Firstly, the credit rating agencies have already stated that they are unlikely to downgrade the US rating in the short term following Standard & Poors’ reduction in rating from AAA to AA+ in August. Next, the universe of risk-free assets is declining. For example, recent losses from the universe include Italy and arguably France. Even though the credit worthiness of the US is certain to deteriorate markedly over the next few years, US bond yields (the cost of borrowing) may not necessarily rise as a result of a reduction in credit quality as investors seek safe havens for their monies. The US’ safe haven status should be retained because the US dollar is the reserve currency of the world and the US banking system is smaller as a proportion of its GDP relative to other leading nations (and therefore less risky). In truth, politicians are only likely to implement tough austerity measures to regain control of public finances when they are pushed into a corner and US bond market investors appear unwilling to force the issue, at least in the short term.

Simon Kaye is divisional director at Investec Wealth & Investment

Make it a safe light show A

CCIDENT statistics from previous years indicate that 80,000 people will go to their local A&E departments over the 12 days of Christmas. One thousand of these people will be suffering from “Christmas tree-related injuries”. Although this type of statistic is always amusing (and hard to believable) it is a good idea to take some commonsense precautions with regard to Christmas tree lights used to brighten up the offices, the showroom or the staff kitchen. Commonsense precautions for decorative lights include: ● If the Christmas lights have not been looked at since last January when they were put away, give them and any associated electrical extension leads a visual inspection


looking for signs of any obvious damage ● Use an RCD breaker at power socket outlet and check the breaker works ● If lights are to be used outside, make sure they are suitable for exterior use ● Check the routes for the electrical trailing leads to prevent trip hazards or damage to the power cables ● Keep flammable materials

away from lights ● Switch off lights overnight ● Remember to include decorative lights and power leads in any programme of portable appliance testing. It is not necessary to test new lights if they have been purchased from reputable sources and display a BS Kitemark. For further information on electrical safety, contact Wilby Risk Management – but don’t let your fairy lights spoil your Christmas!

Mark Dalton is associate director at Wilby Ltd

Digital agency has good taste

A DIGITAL agency in Huddersfield has completed a tasty assignment for another firm in the town. Make, based at the Media Centre, Northumberland Street, has been appointed by Taste Marketing Ltd to re-design www.taste and make it more user-friendly. The tastecard, launched in 2006, now has more than 500,000 members who benefit from discounts on meals at more than 5,500 restaurants nationwide. Warren Slingsby (top), creative director of Make, said: “The team a tastecard recognise that it is vital, this continually evolving digital landscape, to constantly develop their online presence to ensure the website meets customer expectations and provides the bes possible user experience. “We are delighted to be part of tha and to be working with such a success story.” Jamie Milner (also pictured), co-founder of tastecard said: “Our website is the key touch point for our members. Since launch, the number of restaurants we work wit has dramatically increased. “We now want to deliver a much more customised online experienc to ensure our tastecard holders ca continue to maximise the value of their membership’ The new site, which is expected to attract about 7m visitors, will go liv in early January, 2012. Make, founded by Mr Slingsby, specialises in mobile and lists Gol Best Western, Aesica, Just Milk an The Hospital Club among its client

IT support firm renews links

A COMPANY providing IT support Huddersfield has strengthened its links with a leading law firm. Hart Brown Solicitors, with offices in London and Guildford, Surrey, has signed on for a third year with Lockwood-based P2 Technologies P2 provides the firm with an outsourced IT service with round-the-clock system monitorin together with cost controlled on si and remote support. In addition P2, provides strategic I advice and guidance to ensure tha the firm’s IT system is continually updated and at the forefront of all technological developments. Roger Pearson, director of P2, said “We are delighted that Hart Brown Solicitors has continued to rely on the IT support services of P2. Our support service provides Hart Brown with the reassurance that any IT problems or issues will be dealt with immediately.”



Mirfield franchisee makes connection A HUDDERSFIELD businessman is making sparks fly. Lee Marsden is one of the first franchisees of Sunersol – a specialist company helping other firms comply with the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment regulations. He took the opportunity with the Mirfield based company as he recognised to potential to make an income through providing a vital service recycling



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Page 5 unwanted and faulty items.. Strict legislation governs how and where businesses and members of the general public can dispose of WEEE items. Sunersol’s Electrofarm division – – ensures that all material treated at the UK recycling facilities is either reused for the UK market or pre-treated before sending to Sunersol’s recycling facilities for full recovery.

It’s time you got more from your accountant Thinking… outside the books

■ WEB WORK: Laura Scholey (back, left), of Ask Insight, with Charlie Kemp (back, right), of Split Pixel working on the portal with Studio School students Mathew Gadd and Victoria Bryce-Chan

Students get creative with online portal

A NEW online portal has been launched to promote the Huddersfield’s Creative and Media Studio School to local businesses. The portal – a website with added functionality – is called Get Creative in Kirklees with the domain for short. The name and the way it looks is the result of a series of “co-creation” consultation sessions held with the Studio School students throughout the course of this year – as the students will ultimately be responsible for running the site day-to-day. Richard Noon, research director at Ask Insight, said the portal had been designed to strengthen the links between the Studio School and its creative, media and digital business community. That in turn will help to generate employer engagement through work placements, work experience and job creation. “It’s also a valuable resource which the Studio School students can use to support their learning,” he said. “The students can search for creative, media and digital agencies using the database, develop their understanding about their chosen sector as well as gain experience sourcing news stories and uploading them to the website.” The portal aims to create a “hub” for the creative, media and digital sector which will eventually offer each of the engaged businesses an online presence in the Studio School’s online creative community. It can also be used as a resource for creative people wanting to find out about what is happening in Kirklees and by students interested in studying at the Studio School. Richard said was just one “end” of the portal as it also has a

added value services include… Tailored programme to maximise profitability Tailored tax efficient solutions

Regular updates & support to help your business FREE use of our facilities for your meeting

Support all day, every day Customer Relationship Management platform with numerous features. Joan Young, principal of Netherhall Learning Campus, said: “Our Studio School aims to provide a unique education experience which will improve the employand quote KBN /1211 to give us the chance to help you ability of our students within the creative achieve your goals, or contact us through our website at:sector. “We are now inviting creative, media and digital businesses to get involved and help us make this – the first Creative and Media Studio School an outstanding success for our Students.” T h e d e v e l o pAll items of electrical and electronic ment of the Get equipment collected include: Creative in Kirklees portal has • Office equipment been overseen by • Canteen and catering equipment H u d d e r sincluding large commercial items field-based Ask Insight. • IT equipment We b d e s i g n • Televisions and computer monitors agency Split Pixel • Fridges (Domestic and Commercial) has designed and • Small electrical appliances developed the web• Office equipment including large site. printers and photocopiers Charlie Kemp, • Fluorescent lamps director at Split Pixel, said: “The portal has been a Call us today to discuss collection: really exciting project to work on and Lee Marsden – Sales Director: differs from our T: 01484 483028 usual commercial clients. M: 0779 002 0702 “We have really E: enjoyed being involved in every part of the proSunersol provides a secure collection and recycling service ensuring no reuse of computers and destruction of data. cess.”

Call Freephone: 0800 32 32 03




Page 6

Award for valley scheme A HOLME Valley property developer has won another award for one of its projects. Brockholes-based Conroy Brook took the title for Most Outstanding Retirement Apartment Development in the UK Over 50’s Housing Awards 2011. The accolade comes for the firm’s Holme Valley Court retirement apartment complex in Holmfirth. The company landed the award in competition with more than 900 other entries and following anonymous inspections and hours of research and evaluation. Pat Mead, sales executive for the development, collected the award alongside colleague Christine Jackson at a ceremony in Westminster,

London. Conroy Brook chief executive Richard Conroy said: “Achieving this success at Holme Valley Court confirms that our approach to designing and building retirement homes is working. “We aim to build on this achievement with our next proposed scheme, Prickleden Mills also in Holmfirth, which goes in for planning this month.” Holme Valley Court was built in the grounds of the Holme Valley Memorial Hospital, with views of landscaped gardens and the beautiful Holme Valley. Designed to cater for the needs of the over 50s, facilities include full disabled access, eight-person lift, communal lounge, patio and

garden areas with outdoor seating, water features, artwork and lighting, two guest bedrooms for visitors and 24-hour alarm call system. In addition, each apartment has a video-phone entry system and burglar alarm, while the complex itself has building CCTV, and has been designed for maximum comfort and security. The development has already won accolades from the Federation of Master Builders and at the West Yorkshire Built in Quality Awards. Conroy Brook last year won the UK Housebuilder of the Year Award in the small-medium category.

Visitor centre recognised by judges A BRIGHOUSE solar panel installation company has won a prestigious prize. Ploughcroft was the winner of the category for Energy Solution for a Community Building in the 37th annual National Home Improvement Council Awards held in London. The company was

recognised for its Eco Roof Visitor Centre, which opened its doors almost a year ago to provide information and advice on renewable energy to local authorities, building industry professionals, homeowners, environmentalists and students.

Thursday 26 January 2012 7pm

Cedar Court Hotel, Ainley Top, Huddersfield

For further information contact:

Richard Smith 01484 477623, or Paul Andrew 01484 477621, or Doug West 01484 477624

Judges praised the development at St Pegs Mill as setting the standard for future installations in this newly-emerging industry. They said it also embraces the excellent customer care insurance guarantee that is an important ingredient of this business sector.

19, 20 & 21a Southgate, Elland 1 Town centre investment opportunity 1 2 shops plus 3 bedroomed flat 1 Further details on application

Single Building Plot, Huddersfield Road, Kirkburton

67 Huddersfield Road, Elland

Land at Burgh Mill Lane, Dewsbury Moor

69 Huddersfield Road, Elland

1 Outline planning permission for five dwellings 1 0.129 Hectares (0.32 Acres)

1 Large refurbished 2 bedroomed mid terrace house 1 Let on AST producing £420 per calendar month

Land adjacent to 64 Woodhouse Hill, Fartown, Huddersfield

71 Huddersfield Road, Elland

1 Planning permission for large detached house and double garage 1 Excellent residential area 1 0.069 Hectares (0.17 Acres)

1 Former garden with outline planning permission for 1 house 1 Good residential location 1 0.052 Hectares (0.13 Acres)

Oaklands, Dalton, Huddersfield

1 Character detached stone property 1 667m2 (7180 sq ft) 1 Former offices with planning permission for change of use to C3 residential

1 2 bedroomed mid terrace house 1 Let on AST producing £300 per calendar month

1 Hire centre/workshop investment 1 290m2 (3126 sq ft) 1 Currently producing £15,500 per annum

Cold Hill Farm, Cold Hill Lane, Huddersfield

1 Farmhouse and barn with planning permission for conversion and extension to create a detached dwelling

■ HOME WIN: Jason Ownsworth (left) and his wife Jolanta with Peter Bennett (second left), technical and business relations director for Premier Guarantee; and Worth Homes site manager Jamie Young

Developer is a winner A DEVELOPMENT company in Huddersfield has won an award for excellence. Worth Homes was national winner of the Premier Guarantee Excellence Awards 2011 for its Scotgate Fold development in Honley. Worth Homes is run by husband and wife team Jason and Jolanta Ownsworth together with a few carefully picked loyal staff and contractors. They pride themselves on building high quality, technically perfect and aesthetically impressive individual homes. Mr Ownsworth has more than 25 years experience in the building industry while his wife is a qualified solicitor, ensures the day-to-day running of the business is smooth and efficient. The Scotgate Fold Development, designed by Acumen Architects, comprises four homes built in natural stone, each with five double bedrooms and three bathrooms, hardwood doors and windows and south-facing gardens. The properties are situated off a private drive with access through electric gates. Each home has solar panels on the southern aspect of the roof and solar hot water systems, with multi room audio distribution and multi room HD distribution for satellite and DVD. Internally, each home has a contemporary French-polished ash staircase with glass balustrade, French-polished internal doors, underfloor heating to the ground floor and all bathrooms with individual thermostatic controls. Each has a magnificent breakfast kitchens and two of the properties have attached family rooms with retractable five-panel glass doors which can be fully opened to enjoy the south facing gardens. Each has four or five bedrooms while two of the properties have a separate study. The award was presented to Mr Ownsworth by Peter Bennett, technical and business relations director for Premier Guarantee. Said Mr Bennett: “Scotgate Fold at Honley is a lovely edge of village location which has had new homes added over many years. Worth Homes Yorkshire Ltd

have now added a further four new family homes to this location and I must say they are excellent properties. “It is apparent that Worth Homes place customer satisfaction and standards very much at the top of their criteria and their build processes, their attention to detail and the execution of the construction reflect these values.” Said Mr Ownsworth: “We are committed to providing luxury, high quality homes in the Yorkshire area and we are proud to have received this national award. “I’d like to thank all our contractors and anyone involved in the development at Scotgate Fold for all their hard work. “The last couple of years have been tough for the building industry, but we try to remain optimistic and I would say that if you put the right time, effort and quality into building a new property and price the property realistically then the property will sell. “People looking for new build homes want to see quality. “First impressions count on a new development and once customers are able to view the properties they can see the quality of workmanship and high quality finish in all our developments.” Jamie Young, Worth Home’s site manager, added: “Working for Jason and Jolanta and being involved in their family business is a great privilege. “They are very thorough and it is a great company to work for. They have a lot of drive and commitment in building quality homes and I am pleased to be part of their success.” The prestigious site at Scotgate Fold, Honley is now coming to a close with the final property having been sold this month. Worth Homes is also building four detached properties in Birchencliffe and will be starting two semi-detached properties in New Mill early in the New Year.






Automation Works 656 Leeds Road, Huddersfield 639 m2 (6,880 sq ft)

Barncliffe Business Park, Shelley, Huddersfield 678m2 (7,298 sq ft)

Franklyn Court, Off Wakefield Road, Lepton 1,500 â&#x20AC;&#x201C; 12,250 sq ft

Good quality single storey industrial/ warehouse premises with offices located adjacent main A62 Leeds Road next to Hepworth Honda.

Modern single storey warehouse/industrial units with good site loading and parking. Well located for M1.

Single storey industrial/warehouse complex with offices immediately adjacent main Wakefield Road between M1 and Town Centre.


Available January 2012


Flexible Terms


Immediately available

Colneside Business Park, Milnsbridge M2 850m2 (9,151 sq ft) M4 1,595 m2 (17,166 sq ft) High quality modern industrial/warehouse units with offices and large central yard area.


For more information contact Alec Michael on 07717 870 320 or email


■ IN THE PICTURE: Emma (centre), of the Hollybank Artists with Carol Simpson (left) and Sarah Crowther, of Chadwick Lawrence

Support for the arts PARTNERS at a law firm in Huddersfield have shown an eye for art and their support for the Hollybank Trust by purchasing seven pieces by the Hollybank Artists. The Mirfield-based Hollybank Artists are a group of adults with profound physical disabilities and complex medical needs. The pieces of art will be used to decorate Chadwick Lawrence’s Railway Street offices – with several taking pride of place in the boardroom. Carol Simpson, of Chadwick Lawrence, said: “It’s a pleasure to support such a good cause and we’re delighted with the artwork. It’s both colourful and vibrant and will complement our Huddersfield offices beautifully.” Stewart Geddes, of The Hollybank Trust, said: “It’s been a great project for the Artists to work on the Chadwick Lawrence commission. Seven pieces is a substantial order, which our artists have enjoyed working on and we’re thrilled that they will take pride of place in Chadwick Lawrence’s premises.” Hollybank Trust cares for children, young people and adults with profound disabilities and complex medical needs.

Paul Hepples

Seddon Property Services PAINTING and maintenance specialist Seddon Property Services, which has offices in Huddersfield, has appointed Paul Hepples as business development manager for the North East of England. Mr Hepples (pictured) joins Seddon from Constructionline, the national database of pre-qualified construction services, where he was also business development manager. In his new role, he heads business development in the region, securing opportunities with existing and new clients across Yorkshire, the East Midlands, Northumberland, County Durham, Tyne and Wear and Teesside. Seddon Property Services is part of the Seddon Group, a family-owned company specialising in construction, painting and maintenance and housebuilding. The group has a national turnover of more than £250m. “Paul’s expertise in work-winning, sales and customer relations and his knowledge of the construction and maintenance sector makes him an extremely valuable addition to our business development team,” said Geoff Emett, national sales manager for Seddon Property Services. “Paul has held a number of senior roles including working as commercial manager for Avonside Roofing, as commercial director for Arrow Structural Framing and as European technical sales manager for James Hardie Building Products.”

Movers and shakers

Page 8

Dragon fires up IT supply firm DRAGON’S Den star James Caan has given bosses at a Huddersfield company the benefit of his advice. IT supplier Aindale Business Management Services Ltd won the one-off mentoring session with the star entrepreneur following its success in a competition run by security software supplier Symantec for its small business partners. For the exclusive session, Mr Caan joined Aindale managing director Wayne Cockerill to discuss his firm’s business strategy and provide first hand, tailored advice from an expert in investing and running businesses. Said Mr Cockerill: “We’re thrilled to have won this mentoring session. Opportunities like this just don’t come around that often. “Being able to share our business plan with James ahead of the session was a real coup,

enabling us to get real insight and expertise, armed with an understanding of our businesses unique requirements. “We’ve all watched Dragon’s Den, so the whole team at Aindale was really excited. James’ perspectives on our business were truly valuable and we were much relieved that he didn’t utter the dreaded, ‘I’m out!’” Said Mr Caan: “Any entrepreneur or business owner worth their salt relies on an ability to calculate risk and understand its impact. “I’ve met with a lot of businesses over the years and some do really underestimate the importance of managing company information, despite the consequences that leaked confidential information or poor disaster recovery plans can have on a company’s reputation or – worst case scenario – its survival.

■ ADVICE: James Caan has been helping an IT supplier

“With the economy like it is and with so many other risks for business to mitigate, protecting data needn’t be one. “As a Symantec partner, Aindale is ahead of the game and plays a key role in helping s m a l l e r o rg a n i s at i o n s t o

Partnership is taking off

■ FLIGHT PLAN: Paul Gowland, of Yorkshire Air Ambulance, with Revell Ward partners Jennifer Davies (left) and Karen Borowski HUDDERSFIELD accountancy firm Revell Ward is flying high after being appointed auditors to the Yorkshire Air Ambulance. Karen Borowski, partner at Revell Ward, said: “We are very proud to be working with such a wonderful charity and look forward to helping them make the most out of the income so generously donated by the public.” She said: “The Yorkshire Air Ambulance is a well known and highly regarded charity and it provides a critical service that anyone of us may need at any time.” The YAA require £7,200 a day to keep its helicopters fighting fit and ready to save lives. Revell Ward, based at Market Street in Huddersfield, is already an energetic

supporter of the YAA through the Keep it Up Campaign. Following the lead of partner John Wilson last year, the firm’s two female partners, Karen Borowski and Jennifer Davies, will take a 250-mile tandem ride from Yeovil to Huddersfield for the third Pedal 4 Pounds fund-raising event. YAA chairman Peter Sunderland said: “We are always keen to work with and support local Yorkshire businesses – keeping monies donated by Yorkshire people, being spent in Yorkshire with a Yorkshire based company. We are very much looking forward to working with Revell Ward in the future and developing our close working partnership with them.”

address these challenges, and I was very happy to share some of my experiences with them.” Caan has worked with Symantec on an educational programme to equip entrepreneurs and small business with the knowledge and tools to understand and mitigate potential risk, helping them to safeguard their assets. Ross Walker, director of small business for Symantec UK, said: “Just as small businesses are a vital part of the UK economy, our partners are essential to Symantec’s success as a business. “To team up such a valued partner and thriving business such as Aindale with James Caan was an opportunity not to be missed. And it further supports our drive to free up entrepreneurs to focus on driving their own businesses forward.”

Custom-built contribution HUDDERSFIELD Town has made a custom-built addition to its family of business partners. Batley-based Overfinch, which specialises in modifying Range Rovers, has signed up with the Terriers as partners for the remainder of the 2011/12 season. As part of the partnership, Overfinch will visit the club's training ground at Canalside on two occasions throughout the season to showcase its Overfinch Range Rovers. The firm, formed in 1975, will also host a golf day as well as supporting Huddersfield Town’s golf day next year. Overfinch will also add some glitz and glamour to Huddersfield Town’s annual Town advertising manager Mark Jacobs said: “We are delighted that a brand and company as popular as Overfinch has chosen to join the Club as an official partner. “Overfinch is a highly respected name in the car industry and to have them as part of our family of partners shows the strength of the club’s business portfolio.” Overfinch managing director Andrew McCarthy said: “We are proud to be associated with a club that boasts the history and tradition of Huddersfield Town. “We are looking forward to working closely with the club throughout the remainder of the season.”

Kirklees Business News 13/12/11  

The business NEWSpaper for Kirklees.